Weekly Harvest Newsletter
Sustainable Agriculture News Briefs - May 9, 2007
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.
News & Resources
* Judge Upholds Ban on Genetically Modified Alfalfa
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* A Guide to Serving Local Food Released
* Publication Offers Information on Promoting Farmers' Markets
* Southern SARE Seeks Administrative Council Nominees
* Mustard Bran as an Affordable Dairy Feed
* North Dakota No Longer Requiring DEA License to Grow Hemp
* North Central Region SARE Research and Education Program
* Maryland Farm and Producer Viability Program
* Pennsylvania Energy Harvest
* North American Agroforestry Conference
* Entrepreneurial Sustainable Agriculture Training
* Composting: Small Scale to Farm Scale
News & Resources
Judge Upholds Ban on Genetically Modified Alfalfa
US District Court Judge Charles Breyer ruled May 3 in San Francisco in favor of a continued ban on planting genetically modified, "Roundup Ready" alfalfa, reports a Reuters news story on Planet Ark. The judge said an injunction against planting the herbicide-resistant alfalfa developed by Monsanto should remain in place until government studies on the environmental effects of the crop are complete. The judge extended the preliminary injunction he put in place in March, noting, "The harm to these farmers and consumers who do not want to purchase genetically engineered alfalfa or animals fed with such alfalfa outweighs the economic harm to Monsanto, Forage Genetics and those farmers who desire to switch to Roundup Ready alfalfa."
A Guide to Serving Local Food Released
The Glynwood Center has released A Guide to Serving Local Food On Your Menu (PDF/680KB). This Guide is a primer to help foodservice managers and directors, caterers, chefs, restaurateurs and others consider creative ways to incorporate local food products into almost any foodservice setting. Chefs, institutional purchasing agents and others share their experience in short case studies within the 32-page Guide. Topics include where to begin, identifying sources of supply, developing relationships with farmers, working through existing distributors, and things to consider about the regional food system.
Related ATTRA Publication: Bringing Local Food to Local Institutions
Publication Offers Information on Promoting Farmers' Markets
The Kansas Rural Center has created a new publication with information on promoting Farmers’ Markets. Marketing the Market (PDF / 952KB) reviews effective marketing principles utilizing market newsletters and how to partner with the community. The 6-page booklet addresses topics such as salesmanship, display, and advertising. It is available online in PDF.
Southern SARE Seeks Administrative Council Nominees
The Administrative Council of the Southern Region SARE Program is seeking nominations for one producer, one NGO representative and one agribusiness representative. All nominees must be familiar with sustainable agriculture and its impact on the environment and rural communities. The new Council members will serve a three-year term starting December, 2007. Applications should include a statement of the nominee’s ability to work collaboratively to address sustainable agriculture needs; a description of the person’s interest in and contributions to sustainable agriculture; a description of teamwork capabilities; confirmation of the nominee’s consent to be nominated; demographic information. To be considered, Dr. Jeff Jordan must receive your written nomination (including self nominatons) by July 1, 2007. University of Georgia Campus at Griffin, 1109 Experiment Street, 203 Stuckey Building, Griffin, GA 30223-1797, email@example.com
Mustard Bran as an Affordable Dairy Feed
A University of Minnesota-Crookston (UMC) researcher has studied using mustard bran as an alternative feed for dairy cattle. Minnesota Ag Connection reported, Harouna Maiga, UMC department of agriculture professor, found that substituting some of the soybean meal and all of the beet pulp in the animal's diet with mustard bran increased daily milk production by about 4 pounds and did not change milk composition or feed intake. Mustard bran is a by-product of mustard milling and is a less expensive option than other feeds.
North Dakota No Longer Requiring DEA License to Grow Hemp
North Dakota's legislature has passed a bill that removes the state requirement for a farmer to have a federal Drug Enforcement Agency license to grow industrial hemp, reports USAgNet. DEA and North Dakota officials have been negotiating for federal recognition of state-licensed industrial hemp growers; however, when they failed to reach an agreement, legislators removed the requirement for a DEA license from the state licensing procedure. The state action can't protect industrial hemp growers from federal prosecution, but a group of North Dakota farmers has filed a lawsuit seeking to prevent the federal government from enforcing marijuana laws against them.
> More Breaking News
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North Central Region SARE Research and Education Program
The USDA’s North Central Region (NCR) Sustainable Agriculture Research and Education (SARE) program supports innovators with competitive Research and Education grants. Individual grants range from $10,000 to $150,000, are awarded to collaborative teams, and involve producers and an outreach component.
Proposals are due June 19, 2007.
Maryland Farm and Producer Viability Program
The goal of this program is to improve the financial viability of producers/processors or assist fledging rural entrepreneurs through specialized business planning assistance. The aim is to help early stage enterprises with operational and market risk assessment and with enhanced business plan development.
Proposals are due May 18, 2007.
Pennsylvania Energy Harvest
This round of Energy Harvest grants will fund projects that promote and build markets for advanced or renewable energy technologies. Eligible proposals include: renewable energy deployment; biomass energy projects; coal-mine methane, waste coal reclamation for energy; implementation of innovative energy efficiency technologies; or clean distributed generation infrastructure improvements. Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection is particularly interested in supporting proposals that are market-driven, create jobs, and produce economic development within the Commonwealth.
Proposals are due June 15, 2007.
> More Funding Opportunities
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North American Agroforestry Conference
June 10-13, 2007
The objective of the conference is to stimulate the adoption of agroforestry practices for the sustainable development of rural land from a multifunctional perspective. It will include two days of talks, a scientific poster session and pre- and post-conferece field trips.
Entrepreneurial Sustainable Agriculture Training
May 29, 2007
Western Rural Development Center presents this workshop on "Alternatives for Processing, Packaging, Labeling and Marketing in Retail/Internet Environments." The training workshop is designed to train two-person teams who will then return to their sub-region and conduct additional trainings. They encourage participation of Extension faculty, USDA Rural Development, NRCS, and other USDA agency personnel, non-profit organizations, grocer associations, banking institutions and other federal, state, and private agricultural professionals, partnered with an agricultural producer.
Composting: Small Scale to Farm Scale
May 19, 2007
Upper Providence Township, Pennsylvania
This PASA-sponsored field day will showcase a number of different composting systems, including everything from homemade machinery to top-of-the-line composting equipment. The event will be held at Two Particular Acres, a horse and crop farm operated by Ned and Gail Foley.
> More Events
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