Home | Newsletter Archives

ATTRA - National Sustainable Agriculture Information Service

Weekly Harvest Newsletter

Sustainable Agriculture News Briefs - July 18, 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.

Share The Harvest: Please forward this newsletter to friends and colleagues who might be interested in the latest sustainable agriculture news, funding opportunities, and events.

News & Resources
* Organic Farming Yield Can Feed World, Says Study
* Animal Antibiotics Transfer to Crops Through Manure
* National Farmers Market Week Set
* Farmers Find New Ways to Enter Profession
* USDA Dedicates Animal Research Facility

Funding Opportunities
* Northeast SARE Farmer Grant Program
* Leopold Center Summer 2007 RFP
* Kentucky Regional Agritourism Marketing Grants

Coming Events
* Hands-on Soil and Animal Testing
* Organic Research & Farm Tour
* Kitchen Garden Day

News & Resources

Organic Farming Yield Can Feed World, Says Study
Organic farming can yield up to three times as much food on individual farms in developing countries as low-intensive methods on the same land, say the findings of a University of Michigan study. The results refute the long-standing claim that organic farming methods cannot produce enough food to feed the global population. Details on the study, as well as podcasts in English and Spanish, are available online from the university.

Animal Antibiotics Transfer to Crops Through Manure
A study by researchers at the University of Minnesota shows that antibiotics used on livestock can appear in food crops grown in soil treated with livestock manure, says an Environment News Service story. The research appears in the current issue of the Journal of Environmental Quality, and shows that corn, lettuce and potatoes grown on greenhouse soil treated with manure containing the common livestock drug Sulfamethazine take up the drug. The study indicates that organic crops may be at particular risk of antibiotic contamination because they are frequently fertilized with animal manure.

National Farmers Market Week Set
August 5-11, 2007 has been proclaimed National Farmers Market Week by the U.S. Department of Agriculture. In his proclamation, the Secretary of Agriculture encourages the people of the United States to "celebrate the benefits of farmers markets and the bountiful production of our Nation's farmers with appropriate observances and activities." Many markets across the country plan special events to mark the week.

Farmers Find New Ways to Enter Profession
Beginning farmers are entering the profession through some non-traditional routes, according to an Associated Press article that appeared in The Missoulian. While the number of young farmers is declining, and many children of farm families are not entering farming, there is an increase in part-time farmers meeting niche markets. Many of these farmers come to farming after careers in other fields. Several farm transition programs are helping to match beginning farmers with older, retiring farmers, to keep land in agricultural production and help beginners overcome the hurdle of finding land to farm.

USDA Dedicates Animal Research Facility
The USDA recently dedicated a new animal research facility in Ames, Iowa. The new facility consolidates three units within two USDA agencies. The building is designed for optimal safety and security because the scientists will work with a variety of endemic, zoonotic and foreign animal diseases. The new building contains more than 155,000 square feet and will house cattle, bison, elk, deer, reindeer, sheep and hogs. It includes designated areas for ARS research as well as for APHIS diagnostics testing training and biologic product evaluation.

> More Breaking News

Back to top

Funding Opportunities

Northeast SARE Farmer Grant Program
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. Grants average about $5,200, and are capped at $10,000.
Proposals are due December 18, 2007.

Leopold Center Summer 2007 RFP
The 2007 Request for Pre-proposals (RFP) has been issued for possible projects in the Leopold Center’s three initiative areas – ecology, marketing and food systems, and policy. The Center is also issuing a “special call” this year to develop a new work team focused on the opportunities for grass-based livestock systems. The team will unite multiple organizations seeking research and education solutions to enhance sustainable livestock production. A one- to two-page concept paper on the project and how it fits with the Leopold Center mission and initiative can be submitted by 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).
Proposals are due August 17, 2007.

Kentucky Regional Agritourism Marketing Grants
The Kentucky Department of Agriculture has announced a matching grant program to assist regional agritourism organizations in purchasing marketing materials. The maximum award per region is $8,500.
Proposals are due August 1, 2007.

> More Funding Opportunities

Back to top

Coming Events

Hands-on Soil and Animal Testing
August 3-4, 2007
Troy, Pennsylvania

PASA offers this session on Principles of Holistic Livestock Production from Soil Fertility to Veterinary Care. This two-day workshop will provide in-depth hands-on instruction on producing healthy and productive livestock. Included are the keynotes of total soil fertility (chemical and biological), forage nutrient density, and alternative treatments for what ails your livestock, from scours to pneumonia to mastitis. Emphasis will be on preventing problems, as well as maximizing the success of treatments, based upon the most efficacious, non-drug remedies, supplements and modalities.

Organic Research & Farm Tour
August 7, 2007
Pantego, North Carolina

As part of the Center for Environmental Farming Systems' Seasons of Sustainable Agriculture series, this event will tour research at the Tidewater Research Station in Plymouth on weed management and soil fertility for organic corn and soybean growers. A visit to a nearby farm will highlight weed management options, including new organic herbicides.

Kitchen Garden Day
August 26, 2007

Kitchen Garden Day is an annual, decentralized celebration of food produced on a human scale. It is an opportunity for people around the world to gather in their gardens with friends, family, and members of their local community to celebrate the multiple pleasures and benefits of home-grown, hand-made foods.

> More Events

Back to top

Subscribe to the Weekly Harvest

Comments? Questions? E-mail the Weekly Harvest Newsletter editor Mary Ann Thom at .

Weekly Harvest and ATTRAnews Archives Available Online
Digital versions of recent 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 ATTRA - National Sustainable Agriculture Information Service is managed by the National Center for Appropriate Technology (NCAT) and is funded under a grant from the United States Department of Agriculture's Rural Business-Cooperative Service. Visit the NCAT Web site for more information on our sustainable agriculture projects.

© Copyright 2007 NCAT

Back to top

Ask a Sustainable Agriculture Expert

Submit questions to our professional staff online

Home | Newsletter Archives