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ATTRA - National Sustainable Agriculture Information Service

Weekly Harvest Newsletter

Sustainable Agriculture News Briefs - April 22, 2009

Weekly sustainable agriculture news and resources gleaned from the Internet by NCAT staff for the ATTRA - National Sustainable Agriculture Information Service Web site. The Weekly Harvest Newsletter is also available online.

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News & Resources
* Spanish Language ATTRA Publication Available As Audio Download
* Researchers Give Tillage Recommendations
* Organic Acreage Increases in Washington
* MOSES Adds Funding Information to Website
* Research Shows Tulips Can Be Grown In High-Tunnels
* New York Program Seeking Grant Reviewers

Funding Opportunities
* New York Environmental Quality Incentives Program Organic Initiative
* Path to Organic Program
* Community Food Projects Competitive Grants

Coming Events
* Ozarks New Energy Conference
* Maine Land Conservation Conference
* Florida Dairy Production Conference

News & Resources

Spanish Language ATTRA Publication Available As Audio Download
The ATTRA Publication Nuevos Mercados Para Su Cosecha (New Markets for Your Crops) is now available as an audio download. This Spanish-language publication details strategies for farmers interested in marketing their products to local institutions such as schools, colleges, hospitals, retirement homes and day care centers.
Related ATTRA Publication:   New Markets For Your Crops

Researchers Give Tillage Recommendations
When using heavy machinery on cropland under potential compaction situations, farmers may get better yields by practicing continuous no-till than with annual deep tillage. According to results from a six-year Ohio State University compaction study at the Northwest Agricultural Research Station near Hoytville, land in continuous no-till showed less effect from intentional compaction than soil that was deep tilled (subsoiled) each fall.
Related ATTRA Publication:   Conservation Tillage

Organic Acreage Increases in Washington
Organic agriculture continues on its upward climb in Washington state, according to a recently released annual report from Washington State University Center for Sustaining Agriculture and Natural Resources. The 2008 profile estimates a total of 96,139 acres of certified organic land statewide, up 18 percent from 81,472 acres in 2007. The amount of certified acreage in the state has increased 183 percent since 2003. The full report is available to download (PDF/338KB).

MOSES Adds Funding Information to Website
Midwest Organic and Sustainable Education Service (MOSES) has added a new page to their website. The Funds for Farmers page contains a huge variety of resources to help beginning and established organic farmers find funds for their farms. From grant opportunities, to government programs and tax credits, there is a funding source out there that is right for you and your farm.
Related ATTRA Resource:   Funding Opportunities

Research Shows Tulips Can Be Grown In High-Tunnels
Iowa State University researchers showed high tunnels can be used to extend the growing season by cultivating tulips over the winter at the Armstrong Research and Demonstration Farm in southwest Iowa. 100 bulbs each of 13 tulip cultivars were planted to see how they would perform and if their quality as cut flowers would be acceptable to local floral shops. The florists were pleased with the size and quality of the tulips.
Related ATTRA Publication:   Specialty Cut Flower Production and Marketing

New York Program Seeking Grant Reviewers
New York farmers and agricultural producers are encouraged to put their knowledge and leadership to work by reviewing project proposals submitted to the New York Farm Viability Institute’s grant programs. The New York Farm Viability Institute is a nonprofit, farmer-led organization that awards funds for research and outreach projects that help increase profits on New York farms. Grants are awarded through a competitive application process. Proposals are reviewed and ranked by farmers within the related agricultural sector. The New York Farm Viability Institute seeks farmers for the following grant proposal review panels: bioenergy, fruit, vegetables, livestock, dairy, green industry, and field crops.

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Funding Opportunities

New York Environmental Quality Incentives Program Organic Initiative
The EQIP Organic Initiative is open to agricultural producers who are certified organic or are transitioning to organic certification. EQIP is a voluntary program that provides financial and technical assistance to eligible agricultural producers who are willing to address priority environmental issues by implementing conservation practices. In order to be eligible, producers are required to develop and carry out an Organic System Plan (OSP) while in the process of transitioning to organic production or to carry out conservation practices which are consistent with an OSP and the purposes of the EQIP program for certified organic operations.
Proposals are due May 15, 2009.

Path to Organic Program
The Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture is pleased to bring the Path to Organic Program to our farming community. Part of the $500,000 appropriation will provide technical assistance to farmers in transition to organic agriculture and the rest of the funding will be provided to participating farmers. Assistance will be available to producers who are currently in the three-year transition process as well as those who have not yet begun the process, which is required by the USDA National Organic Program.
Proposals are due July 31, 2009.

Community Food Projects Competitive Grants
Community Food Projects are intended to take a comprehensive approach to developing long-term solutions that ensure food security in communities by linking the food production and processing sectors to community development, economic opportunity, and environmental enhancement. Comprehensive solutions should focus on: (i) improved access to high quality, affordable food among low-income households; (ii) expanded economic opportunities for community residents through business and economic development, improved employment opportunities, job training, youth apprenticeship, school-to-work transition, and (iii) support for local food systems, from urban gardening to local farms, that provide high quality fresh foods with minimal adverse environmental impact.
Proposals are due May 13, 2009.

> More Funding Opportunities

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Coming Events

Ozarks New Energy Conference
April 30-May 1, 2009
Springfield, Missouri

The Ozarks New Energy Conference: Solutions for Energy Independence will feature more than 20 sessions and 50 exhibitors. Topics covered include renewable energy and sustainable agriculture, biomass production, alternative fuels, and energy efficiency.

Maine Land Conservation Conference
May 1-2, 2009
Brunswick, Maine

Maine Coast Heritage Trust presents the Maine Land Conservation Conference in support of its Maine Land Trust Network program and Maine’s land conservation community. The conference provides training on best practices in land trust management, land transactions, and stewardship. It provides a forum for learning about the most pressing issues facing land conservation today.

Florida Dairy Production Conference
April 28, 2009
Gainesville, Florida

The 2009 program includes internationally respected speakers in various areas with a focus on practical applications. A producer panel of leading dairy producers will discuss how they manage grazing or other alternative dairy production systems on their farms.

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Digital versions of recent Weekly Harvest and ATTRAnews newsletters are available online. ATTRAnews is the newsletter of ATTRA - National Sustainable Agriculture Information Service.

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