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ATTRA - National Sustainable Agriculture Information Service

Weekly Harvest Newsletter
Sustainable Agriculture News Briefs - May 11, 2011

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

Our sustainable agriculture information service, ATTRA, was cut from the federal budget as part of deficit reduction efforts. We cannot maintain this project unless we can find a way to raise operating funds. You can help as we explore our options. First, make your tax-deductible donation today. You can access our online donation form at https://attra.ncat.org/donate.html. For more information, visit NCAT's website to read the most current postings about our efforts to keep this service open.

News & Resources

  • Expert Panel Calls for "Transforming U.S. Agriculture"
  • Food and Agriculture Policy Initiative Launched
  • NOP Invites Comments on Proposed Amendments to National List
  • USDA Project Designates Areas in Missouri and Kansas for Bioenergy Feedstock Production
  • Georgia Codifies Sustainable Agriculture
  • New Farmstay Manual Online

Funding Opportunities

  • North Central Region SARE Research and Education Grant Program
  • Massachusetts Agricultural Energy Grant Program
  • Tennessee Agricultural Enhancement Program

Coming Events

  • OEFFA Farm Tours
  • Heartland Festival: A Celebration of Food, Farming, & Healthy Living in the Central Valley
  • Strolling of the Heifers Weekend

News & Resources

Expert Panel Calls for "Transforming U.S. Agriculture"
Authors of the National Research Councilís 2010 report, Toward Sustainable Agricultural Systems in the 21st Century, are calling for a broad shift in federal policies to speed the development of farm practices that are more economically, socially, and environmentally sustainable.

Food and Agriculture Policy Initiative Launched
Ford Foundation, Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, The William & Flora Hewlett Foundation, The David and Lucile Packard Foundation, W.K. Kellogg Foundation, The McKnight Foundation, Rockefeller Foundation and The Walton Family Foundation have launched AGree, a new initiative that will tackle long-term food and agriculture policy issues confronting the nation and the world as the population continues to grow and resources become ever-more constrained.

NOP Invites Comments on Proposed Amendments to National List
The U.S. Department of Agriculture has published a proposed rule that would establish exemptions for use of two synthetic substances in organic livestock production: fenbendazole and moxidectin as parasiticides.

USDA Project Designates Areas in Missouri and Kansas for Bioenergy Feedstock Production
The first Biomass Crop Assistance Program Project Area proposes the enrollment of up to 50,000 acres in Missouri and Kansas for establishing a dedicated energy crop of native grasses and herbaceous plants for energy purposes. If selected, crop producers will be eligible for reimbursements of up to 75 percent of the cost of establishing a bioenergy perennial crop, and can receive up to five years of annual payments for grassy crops.

Georgia Codifies Sustainable Agriculture
Georgia Governor Nathan Deal has signed legislation that creates a strong working definition for "sustainable agriculture", and that provides that it is the policy of the state to promote sustainable agriculture.

New Farmstay Manual Online
The Minnesota Institute for Sustainable Agriculture has released Farmstay, a how-to manual available for download as a series of PDF files. The manual contains information about what a farmstay is, developing a marketing strategy, applicable regulations, and creating a business plan.

>> More Breaking News

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Funding Opportunities

North Central Region SARE Research and Education Grant Program
The North Central Region SARE Research and Education Grant Program provides funds of up to $200,000 to collaborative teams of scientists, farmers, institutions, organizations, and educators who are exploring sustainable agriculture through research projects or education/demonstration projects.
Pre-proposals are due June 9, 2011.

Massachusetts Agricultural Energy Grant Program
The Massachusetts Department of Agricultural Resources Agricultural Energy Grant Program is a competitive program that funds up to $30,000 of agricultural energy projects in an effort to improve energy efficiency and to facilitate adoption of alternative clean energy technologies by Massachusetts farms.
Applications are due June 30, 2011.

Tennessee Agricultural Enhancement Program
Tennessee Agricultural Enhancement Program provides cost share funds for long term investments in livestock and farming operations. Program opportunities include cattle genetics, livestock equipment, hay storage, livestock feed storage, grain storage, and producer diversification.
The application period is June 1-7, 2011.

>> More Funding Opportunities

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Coming Events

OEFFA Farm Tours
June 4 - November 8, 2011
Ohio

The Ohio Ecological Food and Farm Association (OEFFA) has announced its 2011 series of free public tours of some of Ohioís finest sustainable and organic farms. Twenty tours and two workshops between June and November feature: organic dairy farms and artisan cheese production; a canning facility, grain production; a poultry hatchery; farms using season extension; heirloom vegetable and flower production; diversified livestock farmers; farm markets and retail locations; fiber and fabric production; and farmers using a wide range of direct-to-consumer marketing strategies.

Heartland Festival: A Celebration of Food, Farming, & Healthy Living in the Central Valley
May 28-29, 2011
Stevinson, California

This fun-filled weekend with entertainment, food, and farm tours features a series of workshops focused on water resources management on farm, and agritourism information.

Strolling of the Heifers Weekend
June 3-5, 2011
Brattleboro, Vermont

Strolling of the Heifers shows support and appreciation for family farmers, and features regional food producers, as well as vendors and exhibitors of sustainable goods and services. The event includes a parade, expo, bicycle tours, and Slow Living Summit.

>> More Events

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

National Center for Appropriate Technology (NCAT) logo and link to home page The National Sustainable Agriculture Information Service - ATTRA - was developed and is managed by the National Center for Appropriate Technology (NCAT). The project is funded through a cooperative agreement with the United States Department of Agriculture's Rural Business-Cooperative Service.

Visit the NCAT website for more information on our other sustainable agriculture and energy projects.

© 2011 NCAT

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New & Updated Publications
Agroforestry: An Overview

Organic and Grass-finished Beef Cattle Production

Farmer Profiles: Two Organic Grain Farm Case Studies

Question of the Week
What information can you give me on developing chicken breeding stock?

ATTRA Webinars
The latest webinars are available for viewing in ATTRA's Sustainable Agriculture Video Archive

ATTRA Spanish Newsletter
Subscribe to Cosecha Mensual (Monthly Harvest), ATTRA's Spanish-language e-newsletter

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