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Weekly Harvest Newsletter

Sustainable Agriculture News Briefs - June 25, 2008

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
* Glynwood Harvest Award Nominations Invited
* USDA Awards Renewable Energy Funding
* SARE Releases New Publication
* Northeast Reviving Grain Production
* Web Site Offers Disaster-Related Information
* Organic Farmer Chosen as 2008 Steward of the Land

Funding Opportunities
* Northeast SARE Farmer Grant
* Leopold Center Grant Program
* Pennsylvania Agricultural & Rural Youth Grant

Coming Events
* Food, Fuel and the Future of Farming: Conference on Sustainable Agriculture
* Livestock Handling Seminar
* Growing Green Field Day

News & Resources

Glynwood Harvest Award Nominations Invited
Glynwood Center is calling for nominations for their sixth annual Harvest Awards, which recognize farmers, organizations, and businesses across the United States that demonstrate innovation and leadership in support of regional agriculture and sustainable food systems. Four categories are offered. The Farmer Award recognizes a leader in the farm community; Connecting Communities, Farmers and Food Award recognizes outstanding work done by individuals, businesses or organizations that link farmers and the broader community in building a regional food system; Wave of the Future Award recognizes an individual, business or organization that is developing innovative approaches to address the critical challenges facing our food system; and Good Food for Health Award recognizes an individual, business or organization that is at the forefront of creating ways to use sustainable, regionally-produced food to improve the health of children, the elderly, and consumers that traditionally do not have access to fresh, healthy food. Nominations are due by July 21, 2008.

USDA Awards Renewable Energy Funding
USDA has announced that its Rural Development Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency program will provide $1.52 million in loans and grants to 20 individuals and businesses in six states. The funds will help support installation of renewable energy systems or increase energy efficiency in farm and business operations. Funded projects include a geothermal heating system for a farm shop in Iowa, and more efficient grain dryers for farms in Illinois and Wisconsin. Projects in Iowa, Illinois, South Dakota, Wisconsin, Ohio, and Oregon will receive funding under the program.

SARE Releases New Publication
The Sustainable Agriculture Research and Education program has released a new publication, SARE 20/20: Celebrating Our First 20 Years, Envisioning the Next (PDF/3.5MB). This special 20th anniversary edition chronicles 20 years of agricultural innovation-from SARE's beginning in 1988 to present-day stories of farmers, ranchers, researchers and educators working across America to develop and implement sustainable marketing and production practices.

Northeast Reviving Grain Production
Dairy feed price increases and rising interest in locally grown food are fueling a resurgence in grain production in Northeastern states, according to The Boston Globe. Grain growing had nearly ceased in the region, because it was easier to ship in Midwestern grain than to overcome the weather challenges of Northeast production. This year, however, a Northern Grain Growers Association has formed, and the article reports on several growers who are producing wheat and other small grain crops, and receiving an enthusiastic market response. The growers are working to find varieties of wheat that perform well in a climate prone to rot and disease problems.
Related ATTRA Publication:   Organic Small Grain Production

Web Site Offers Disaster-Related Information
The Extension Services of the nation’s state land-grant universities are working together to provide information about preparing for, surviving and recovering from a natural disaster. The Extension Disaster Education Network includes information from several states on topics such as food and health and farming after disasters.
Related ATTRA Publication:   Disaster Assistance for Agricultural Producers

Organic Farmer Chosen as 2008 Steward of the Land
American Farmland Trust (AFT) has chosen Nash Huber of Nash’s Organic Produce in Sequim, Washington, for its annual Steward of the Land Award. Nash and his team grow more than 100 types of produce, pasture-raised pork, and seed crops on 400 sustainably managed acres in the Dungeness River Valley. The farm products are sold directly to the public through Nash’s Farm Store, a Community Supported Agriculture program (CSA), local restaurants and five area farmers’ markets. He will receive the $10,000 AFT prize for his environmental stewardship and farmland protection efforts. Nash and his wife Patty McManus have been leaders and critical advocates for the preservation of farmland, and they are central to a variety of efforts to raise public awareness about the issue and actively protect agricultural land in Clallam County.

> More Breaking News

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Funding Opportunities

Northeast SARE Farmer Grant
The goal of the Farmer Grant program is to develop, refine, and demonstrate new sustainable techniques and to explore innovative ideas developed by farmers across the region. To apply, you must be a farmer in the Northeast SARE region, made up of Connecticut, Delaware, Massachusetts, Maryland, Maine, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Vermont, West Virginia, and Washington, D.C.
Proposals are due December 16, 2008.

Leopold Center Grant Program
The Leopold Center is seeking pre-proposals for its grant program. The Center’s work is organized in three initiative areas—ecology, marketing and food systems, and policy—each aimed at enhancing the condition and viability of Iowa’s natural resources in varying, yet integrated ways. These three initiatives have separate sections in the RFP. Investigators representing any Iowa nonprofit organization/agency and/or educational institution (such as soil and water conservation districts, schools and colleges, and regional development groups) are eligible to apply. The Center strongly encourages the involvement and collaboration of farmers, landowners, and farm-based businesses in the pre-proposal process.
Proposals are due August 18, 2008.

Pennsylvania Agricultural & Rural Youth Grant
The purpose of the Agriculture and Rural Youth Grant Program is to fund projects, which will increase the knowledge and awareness of agricultural and rural issues in Pennsylvania, in particular, among the youth of Pennsylvania. The Program awards direct grants up to $2,500 and matching grants up to $10,000. Eligible youth organizations are those which are primarily comprised of persons eighteen years of age, or younger, and are organized within the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania to promote development in the areas of agriculture, rural community leadership, vocational training or peer fellowship.
Proposals are due October 31, 2008.

> More Funding Opportunities

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Coming Events

Food, Fuel and the Future of Farming: Conference on Sustainable Agriculture
July 24-25, 2008
Burlington, Vermont

Vermont Law School presents this free conference open to the public. It features sessions on moving beyond industrial animal agriculture, farm policy, climate change, sustainable agriculture, and a local farm tour.

Livestock Handling Seminar
August 11, 2008
Jamestown, North Dakota

Northern Plains Sustainable Agriculture Society announces a workshop with Dr. Tom Noffsinger, a veterinarian and an independent feedlot, facility design and stockmanship consultant from Nebraska. This session will create an awareness that will allow the handler to understand the basic instincts of prey animals and the power of the handler to effectively communicate with cattle.

Growing Green Field Day
July 12, 2008
Jefferson, Maryland

Maryland Small Farm Cooperative is having a free Field Day at Fox Haven Farm, an organic farm that showcases innovative practices for conservation and sustainable living on over 400 acres of land. There will be presentations and demonstrations on sustainable farming and living practices by representatives from DNR, NRCS, Master Gardeners, Bee Keepers, Frederick County 4-H Packgoat Club and others. Visitors will be able to take walking tours to view a solar-powered water system, organic gardening, an environmental house and various conservation and stewardship programs that have been instituted on the farm, such as plantings of over 65,000 new trees (including the American Chestnut), shrubs, warm season and cool season grasses, and wild flowers.

> More Events

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