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ATTRA Sustainable Agriculture

Weekly Harvest Newsletter
Sustainable Agriculture News Briefs - July 18, 2018

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

News & Resources

  • NCAT Accepting Applications for October Armed to Farm in Montana
  • Farm Commons Updates Guide to Farm Business Structures
  • Regeneration Midwest Coalition Launched
  • CFRA Report Examines Efficacy of Conservation Stewardship Program
  • Soil-Test Biological Activity Predicts Nitrogen Needs
  • Moringa Offers Potential Market for Farmers

Funding Opportunities

  • Organic Farming Research Foundation Research Grants Program
  • 2017 Wildfires and Hurricanes Indemnity Program
  • New York Trees for Tribs Grant Program

Coming Events

  • Annual Meeting of the Federation of Southern Cooperatives
  • Grazing Lands Conservation Initiative Conference
  • Pastured and Free-Range Poultry Course

News & Resources

NCAT Accepting Applications for October Armed to Farm in Montana
The National Center for Appropriate Technology (NCAT) is accepting applications from military veterans who want to attend our free, week-long Armed to Farm (ATF) training in Glendive, Montana, October 15-19, 2018. ATF allows veterans and their spouses to experience sustainable, profitable small-scale farming enterprises and explore agriculture as a viable career through farm tours, hands-on experience, and interactive classroom instruction. This training session is limited to residents of the Intermountain and Northwestern states. Applications are due by August 24, 2018.

Farm Commons Updates Guide to Farm Business Structures
Farm Commons has updated its publication Farmers' Guide to Business Structures. The comprehensive, 323-page guide addresses structures such as LLCs, corporations, and partnerships, as well as how anti-corporate farming laws affect business-structure choices and when farmers should form a second entity for agritourism enterprises. The publication is available free online as an e-book file or for sale in print.
Related ATTRA Publication: Tips About Farm Business Structures

Regeneration Midwest Coalition Launched
A group of farmers, farming-related businesses, nonprofits, and others are launching Regeneration Midwest, a 12-state coalition organized to serve as the foundation for transitioning the food and agriculture system from the current industrial model to a regenerative model. The coalition will build regenerative infrastructure by focusing on the sectors of poultry, grains, pork, beef, and strategically selected vegetables and fruits. Farmers who want to join the system or nonprofits willing to engage in state-level organizing can email regenerationmidwest@gmail.com.

CFRA Report Examines Efficacy of Conservation Stewardship Program
The Center for Rural Affairs (CFRA) has released a report titled A Farmer's View: A look at the Conservation Stewardship Program. CFRA surveyed Conservation Stewardship Program (CSP) participants in Iowa, Kansas, Nebraska, North Dakota, and South Dakota. CFRA found that CSP participants valued the program because it enhanced their own conservation efforts, and that they saw improvements in their land as a result.
Related ATTRA Publication: Federal Conservation Resources for Sustainable Farming and Ranching

Soil-Test Biological Activity Predicts Nitrogen Needs
USDA researchers have shown that soil nitrogen mineralization can be predicted with a three-day analysis of soil-test biological activity (STBA). Researchers found that greater STBA was associated with greater plant nitrogen uptake. Field tests confirmed that the higher the STBA level, the lower the need for additional nitrogen, suggesting that corn growers can use pre-season STBA testing to help determine the proper amount of nitrogen to apply for optimum yield and pollution prevention.
Related ATTRA Tutorial: Soil Health

Moringa Offers Potential Market for Farmers
University of California Cooperative Extension (UCCE) is helping farmers market moringa to new buyers. Moringa is a tree with edible leaves and pods, as well as roots and bark with medicinal potential. It is marketed as an Asian specialty vegetable, but UCCE is working to raise awareness by providing information about the vegetable's health benefits, nutritional profile, culinary versatility, and its ability supplement the incomes of small-scale farmers.

>>More Breaking News

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Funding Opportunities

Organic Farming Research Foundation Research Grants Program
The Organic Farming Research Foundation (OFRF) offers funding for research on organic farming and food systems and the dissemination of these research results. Proposals must involve farmers or ranchers in project design and implementation and must take place on certified organic land. The grants program is open to applicants in Canada, Mexico, and the United States. OFRF particularly encourages farmers, ranchers, graduate students, early career researchers, veterans, and Extension personnel to apply.
The deadline for Letters of Intent is August 15, 2018.

2017 Wildfires and Hurricanes Indemnity Program
Agricultural producers affected by hurricanes and wildfires in 2017 may apply for assistance to help recover and rebuild their farming operations through the 2017 Wildfires and Hurricanes Indemnity Program (2017 WHIP). Agricultural production losses due to conditions caused by 2017 wildfires and hurricanes, including excessive rain, high winds, flooding, mudslides, fire, and heavy smoke, could also qualify for assistance through the program. Producers who did not insure their crops in 2017 will receive 65% of the expected value of the crop. Insured producers will receive 70% to 95% of expected value.
Signup is open until November 16, 2018.

New York Trees for Tribs Grant Program
The Trees for Tribs Grant Program supports efforts to reforest New York's tributaries by planting young trees and shrubs along stream corridors to prevent erosion, increase flood water retention, and improve wildlife and stream habitat, as well as protect water quality. Approximately $525,000 is available for eligible projects in the Great Lakes Priority, Mohawk Priority, and Statewide Priority watersheds.
Applications must be submitted by September 7, 2018.

>>More Funding Opportunities

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Coming Events

Annual Meeting of the Federation of Southern Cooperatives
August 16-18, 2018
Birmingham and Epes, Alabama

This event celebrates a half-century of work, memories, and progress in the development of the Federation as the foremost organization serving black farmers, co-op members, and low-income people in the rural South.

Grazing Lands Conservation Initiative Conference
August 20-21, 2018, and September 24-25, 2018
Hattiesburg and Natchez, Mississippi

This conference held in two locations focuses on educating and training new and experienced livestock producers on beef cattle and small ruminants basics. It will also educate producers on funding and technical-assistance opportunities.

Pastured and Free-Range Poultry Course
August 15-16, 2018
Corvallis, Oregon

This course offered by University of California, Davis; NCAT; and partners provides beginning poultry farmers with essential information regarding such topics as husbandry practices, housing, records maintenance, biosecurity, and more.

>>More Events

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