ATTRA - National Sustainable Agriculture Information Service

Weekly Harvest Newsletter


Sustainable Agriculture News Briefs - June 16, 2010
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
* Honey Bee Pest and Disease Survey Underway
* Food Sovereignty Prize Seeks Nominations
* Publication Helps Agribusinesses Deal With Floods
* Wood to Energy Report Released
* New Leopold Center Research Reports Available
* Glynwood Launches Blog


Funding Opportunities
* Georgia Conservation Innovation Grant
* Rural Microentrepreneur Assistance Program
* Vermont Conservation Innovation Grant


Coming Events
* Farm Succession Workshop
* USDA Red Meat Mobile Slaughter Unit Information Session
* Small Producers Marketing Conference



News & Resources

Honey Bee Pest and Disease Survey Underway
WASHINGTON, June 7, 2010 – The U.S. Department of Agriculture today announced the beginning of a 13-state survey of honey bee pests and diseases conducted cooperatively by USDA's Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS), USDA's Agricultural Research Service (ARS) and Pennsylvania State University (PSU). The survey will help USDA scientists to determine the prevalence of parasites and disease-causing microorganisms that may be contributing to the decline of honey bee colonies nationwide.

Food Sovereignty Prize Seeks Nominations
The 2010 Food Sovereignty Prize, sponsored by the Community Food Security Coalition (CFSC) and other organizations, will be awarded at the CFSC Conference in New Orleans, Louisiana, to an individual, organization, or movement that has significantly promoted food sovereignty through on-the-ground actions or developing/implementing programs and policies. The Food Sovereignty Prize Task Force is seeking nominations until Friday, June 18.

Publication Helps Agribusinesses Deal with Floods
WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. - A Purdue University Cooperative Extension Service publication can help agribusinesses prepare for - and survive - floods that pose major challenges to the industry. "Plan Today for Tomorrow's Flood: A Flood Response Plan for Agricultural Retailers" contains tips for creating a flood response plan, putting the plan into action, evacuating when flooding occurs, recovering from floods and rebuilding permits.

Wood to Energy Report Released
KNOXVILLE, Tenn. — A new report by the University of Tennessee Office of Bioenergy Programs and the U.S. Endowment for Forestry and Communities Inc. reviews the current state of research and development of technologies for utilizing wood for the production of energy. The peer-reviewed report entitled “Wood to Energy: A State of the Science and Technology” characterizes industry process designs, stage of development or commercialization, and suitability for the marketplace. It also provides an analysis of market sustainability, including opportunities and barriers, of wood to energy production.

New Leopold Center Research Reports Available
The Leopold Center has operated a competitive grants program since 1988 for research, education and demonstration projects that now cover three initiatives: Marketing and Food Systems, Ecology, and Policy. Summaries are available for all grant projects completed in 2009. These documents show major findings, impact and outreach from each project, condensed from the final project reports submitted by principal investigators.

Glynwood Launches Blog
Glynwood is a not-for-profit organization located in New York's Hudson Valley. The Glynwood mission is to help communities in the Northeast save farming. is dedicated to saving farming. This blog presents news and updates on Glynwood's work, along with photos, videos, and notes on efforts to promote locally grown food and sustainable agriculture.

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Funding Opportunities

Georgia Conservation Innovation Grant
The purpose of Conservation Innovation Grants (CIG) is to stimulate the development and adoption of innovative conservation approaches and technologies, while leveraging the Federal investment in environmental enhancement and protection in conjunction with agricultural production. CIG projects are expected to lead to the transfer of conservation technologies, management systems, and innovative approaches (such as market-based systems) into NRCS policy, technical manuals, guides, and references or to the private sector. CIG promotes sharing of skills, knowledge, technologies, and facilities among communities, governments, and other institutions to ensure that scientific and technological developments are accessible to a wider range of users. CIG funds projects targeting innovative on-the-ground conservation, including pilot projects and field demonstrations.
Proposals are due July 9, 2010.

Rural Microentrepreneur Assistance Program
The Rural Microentrepreneur Assistance Program is a new program that will invest $45.1 million for 2010 in organizations that provide training, technical assistance or make small loans to new and existing rural small businesses.RMAP’s goal is to help new & existing rural microentrepreneurs by providing funds to microenterprise development organizations for microlending and technical assistance to their microloan prospects & borrowers.
Proposals are due July 16, 2010.

Vermont Conservation Innovation Grant
The Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) in Vermont is announcing availability of Conservation Innovation Grants (CIG) to stimulate the development and adoption of innovative conservation approaches and technologies. NRCS anticipates that the amount available for support of the Vermont State CIG competition in Fiscal Year 2010 will be $201,000. Funds will be awarded through a statewide competitive grants process. Only projects to be implemented within the state of Vermont will be considered.
Proposals are due July 6, 2010.

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Coming Events

Farm Succession Workshop (PDF)
June 23-24, 2010
Orange City, Iowa

This workshop, a condensed version of the Iowa State University Ag Link Conference, is delivered locally for the convenience of rural families. During the two sessions, participants will take steps necessary to draft a family statement of intention and a vision of the future.

USDA Red Meat Mobile Slaughter Unit Information Session
June 24, 2010
Boonsboro, Maryland

The U.S. Department of Agriculture Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) is hosting a red meat mobile slaughter unit information session on June 24. The goals of this information session are to educate farmers, ranchers and processors on how to set up mobile slaughter units, receive the federal grant of inspection and meet USDA food safety requirements. The session is being held in response to interest in USDA's efforts to support local/regional slaughter through the "Know Your Farmer, Know Your Food" initiative.


Small Producers Marketing Conference
June 29-30, 2010
Lehi, Utah

This conference will stress farm to institution marketing ideas and strategies for our producers so they can learn how better to approach and do business with institutional food buyers in their region. We will talk about aggregating producers and products for greater marketing power. We will talk about the importance of understanding institutional food buyer’s needs.


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