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ATTRA - National Sustainable Agriculture Information Service

Weekly Harvest Newsletter
Sustainable Agriculture News Briefs - July 14, 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

Funding Opportunities

Coming Events

News & Resources

Peace Corps Seeks Members with Sustainable Agriculture Skills
Have you ever wondered how you can reduce hunger around the world? There is one way—plant gardens, or better yet, teach others how to plant gardens. Did you know that your sustainable farming skills and knowledge are needed in developing nations to help tackle global climate change and world hunger? Now is the time to consider applying to the U.S. Peace Corps. Since 1961, Peace Corps Volunteers have helped communities address food shortages and poor nutrition by building school gardens, developing community gardens, hosting nutrition workshops and more. There is currently a pressing need for volunteers who have practical knowledge in sustainable market gardening techniques. So, if you are looking for a way to make an impact on world hunger and give something back to our global society, you should think about joining the thousands of Americans who are serving abroad with the Peace Corps. For more information contact Frank Higdon (fhigdon@peacecorps.gov.) To fill out an online application, please visit www.peacecorps.gov. Applicants must be U.S. citizens and at least 18 years old, but there is no upper age limit!

Consumer Perceptions of Raw Milk Highlighted in Report
The Center for Integrated Agricultural Systems (CIAS) has released a new report on the study of consumers' perceptions of raw milk. A study led by researchers Özlem Altiok and Michael Bell of the UW-Madison Department of Community and Environmental Sociology found that customers cite improving their health among the top reasons for drinking raw milk. A growing number of consumers feel that pasteurization robs milk of some of its nutritional and health benefits. From September 2005 through June 2007, the researchers used participant observation and in-depth interviews to investigate why people drink raw milk despite health warnings. The study was conducted primarily in Wisconsin.

North Carolina Campaign to Support Local Food Systems
The Center for Environmental Farming Systems (CEFS) is committed to building North Carolina's sustainable local food economy. Through its Farm to Fork initiative and action guide, CEFS has energized and connected thousands of North Carolinians and hundreds of local, regional and statewide organizations that share this commitment. To further this commitment, CEFS is readying a statewide "10% Campaign" to encourage consumers to buy/grow local foods. The intent of the 10% Campaign is straightforward: Encourage consumers to commit 10 percent of their existing food dollars to support local food producers, related businesses and communities. You can sign up to support the 10% Campaign.

Central Oregon Food Network Launches Website
The Central Oregon Food Network website has officially launched, providing local farmers and ranchers an opportunity to connect, share resources and discuss pertinent issues. The website provides a producer’s directory which features nearly 40 farms and ranches in Central Oregon. A list of 10 local restaurants and retailers are also listed due to their support of local food production and consumption. The website offers a discussion forum where farmers and ranchers can submit questions and share their knowledge about growing techniques and other subjects such as alternative fuel, working with worms and growing exotic grains.
Related ATTRA Resource:   Local Food Directories

Value Added Conference Seeks Presenters
“Cultivating Farm Profitability” is the theme of River Country Resource Conservation and Development Council’s 2011 Midwest Value Added Agriculture Conference, to be held Thursday January 27 and Friday January 28 at the Sheraton Hotel in Madison, Wisconsin. The conference will feature presentations designed to educate farmers practicing value added agriculture on their farms. The conference is seeking proposals for presentations on marketing, business management, organics, urban agriculture, and other topics. Presentation proposals are due August 15, 2010.

University of Missouri to Launch Online Agroforestry Graduate Program
The University of Missouri Center for Agroforestry has recently received funding from the University of Missouri System to develop eight courses, creating an Interdisciplinary Online Graduate Program in Agroforestry (PDF/812K). The program will consist of a graduate certificate (12 credits) and master’s degree (30 credits). An existing agroforestry course will be converted to an online course. Three additional courses in the biophysical and socio-economic dimensions of agroforestry will be developed, as will four elective courses in soils, watershed management, natural resource policy and biometrics. Admission to the new graduate certificate and degree program will begin in fall 2010.
Related ATTRA Publication:   Agroforestry Overview

>> More Breaking News

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Funding Opportunities

Agriculture and Food Research Initiative – Foundational Program
The Agriculture and Food Research Initiative (AFRI) is the National Institute of Food and Agriculture’s (NIFA) flagship competitive grant program and was established under section 7406 of the Food, Conservation, and Energy Act of 2008 (the 2008 Farm Bill). AFRI supports work in six priority areas: plant health and production and plant products; animal health and production and animal products; food safety, nutrition, and health; renewable energy, natural resources, and environment; agriculture systems and technology; and agriculture economics and rural communities.
Proposals are due August 23, 2010.

Western SARE Producer Grant
These one- or two-year grants are awarded to agricultural producers who work with support and guidance from a technical advisor. Individual producers may apply for up to $15,000, and a group of three or more producers may apply for up to $30,000. Producers typically use their grants to conduct on-site experiments that can improve their operations and the environment and can be shared with other producers. Grant recipients may also focus on marketing and organic production.
Proposals are due December 3, 2010

Pesticide Environmental Stewardship Program
EPA’s Office of Pesticide Programs (OPP), in coordination with the EPA Regional Offices, announces the availability of approximately $530,000 for assistance agreements to further the pesticide risk reduction goals of the Pesticide Environmental Stewardship Program (PESP). Proposed projects must implement integrated pest management to reduce risks of pesticide use. Projects should demonstrate the relevance of the project to the goals of PESP.
Proposals are due July 26, 2010

>> More Funding Opportunities

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Coming Events

Farm Transition Conference
July 20-23, 2010
Cuyahoga Falls, Ohio

This three day meeting will bring together agricultural professionals, farmers, citizens, and service providers to discuss and learn about exciting projects in farm transition.

Pollinator Biology, Health and Policy Conference
July 24-28, 2010
University Park, Pennsylvania

Planned symposia include Behavioral Ecology, Disease Ecology, Impacts of Environmental Toxins, Conservation and Ecological Applications of Native Pollinators, Coordinated International Efforts on Pollinator Decline, and Policy and Public Outreach. Furthermore, the Xerces Society will be hosting a Pollinator Conservation Short Course in conjunction with the conference.

Heirloom Wheat Workshop
July 28, 2010
Westfield, Vermont

Jack and Ann Lazor will provide us with a tour of their milling facilities and new grain hulling equipment. We will also tour the heirloom wheat varieties and other grain trials on the farm.

>> More Events

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New & Updated Publications
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Beyond Basic Compensation

Montana Farmers Market EBT Manual

Question of the Week
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Tuesday, July 20
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