Weekly Harvest Newsletter
Sustainable Agriculture News Briefs - August 15, 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.
News & Resources
* Cage-Free Egg Market Growing
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* USDA Announces Additional Funding for CSP
* Ohio Governor Creates Food Policy Advisory Council
* Certified Natural New York Program Now Available
* Farm Beginnings Registration Deadline Nears
* Youth Garden Grants Program
* Western IPM Center Work Groups and Information Networks RFPs
* Noble Foundation Grant
Farm & Food Leader's Training
* Center for Environmental Farming Systems Fall Festival
* Family Farm Festival
News & Resources
Cage-Free Egg Market Growing
The market for cage-free eggs is growing, reports The New York Times, as corporate cafeterias, retailers, and even fast food chains pledge to serve only cage-free eggs. Burger King, Omni Hotels, and Whole Foods supermarkets are a few of the large-volume buyers of cage-free eggs. With many large buyers in the market, supplies of cage-free eggs aren't always adequate, since only 5 percent of egg-laying birds are cage-free. The growing demand for cage-free eggs appears to be driven by animal rights concerns, yet some say that conditions for cage-free birds may not be better than those for birds in cages, and point out that not all cage-free eggs are produced under the same conditions, and that cage-free doesn't equate with free range.
Related ATTRA Publication: Poultry House Management for Alternative Production
USDA Announces Additional Funding for CSP
Agriculture Secretary Mike Johanns announced the release of additional funding for Conservation Security Program (CSP) implementation. Funds will be made available for both the completion of payments on Fiscal year 2007 CSP contracts as well as to prepare for a future program signup. CSP is a voluntary program that supports ongoing conservation stewardship on private agricultural working lands and enhances the condition of the nation's natural resources.
Ohio Governor Creates Food Policy Advisory Council
Ohio Governor Ted Strickland signed an executive order (PDF / 161K) August 7 creating the Ohio Food Policy Advisory Council, which is meant to establish a comprehensive, commonsense approach to the state’s food policy. The Ohio Food Policy Advisory Council will bring together representatives from government, the food and agriculture industry, and various regions of the state. The Council is charged with analyzing food production, processing and consumption in Ohio, linking producers and consumers in local food systems and ensuring that citizens in need have greater access to fresh and nutritious food. In addition, the Council will work to encourage the growth of Ohio food products and assist farmers and businesses in effectively marketing their products.
Certified Natural New York Program Now Available
The American Agriculturalist reports there is now a "Certified Natural New York" program. This group certifies that animals are free of antibiotics, hormones, and by-products and are raised under humane conditions. The program also includes a meat grading aspect. This new program was developed to meet the growing demand for "natural" meat products.
Farm Beginnings Registration Deadline Nears
The registration deadline for the 2007-2008 edition of the Land Stewardship Project’s Farm Beginnings® program is Thursday, August 30. Classes will be offered in La Crosse, Wisconsin, and Marshall, Minnesota, beginning this fall. The course consists of a series of classes that take place twice a month between October and March. After March, course participants have the opportunity to attend on-farm educational field days. In 2007, Farm Beginnings is celebrating its 10th year of providing firsthand training in low-cost, sustainable methods of farming.
> More Breaking News
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Youth Garden Grants Program
The National Gardening Association and program sponsor Home Depot offer the Youth Garden Grants Program, which awards grants to schools and community organizations with child-centered garden programs. Applicants must plan to garden in 2008 with at least 15 children between the ages of three and 18 years. In 2008, 150 programs will receive gift cards to The Home Depot for the purchase of gardening materials and supplies particular to the needs of their program, and an activity package from NGA. The top 50 programs will receive gift cards valued at $500, and 100 will receive $250 gift cards. Grants are available for both start-up and established youth garden programs.
Proposals are due November 1, 2007.
Western IPM Center Work Groups and Information Networks RFPs
The Western Integrated Pest Management Center (WIPMC) announces the availability of funds and requests proposals for Work Groups that support the WIPMC. Competitive proposals are solicited from self-establishing multi-state work groups to address information, resource, and research needs in region-wide or broad area categories including: minor crops, major crops, non-crop areas, IPM metrics and/or impact assessments, urban IPM, cropping systems, geographical, school IPM and other issues. Funding in the amount of approximately $50,000 is available. WIPMC also announces the availability of funds and requests proposals for Information Networks that support the WIPMC. Funding in the amount of approximately $200,000 is available for this competitive subcontracts program. A maximum of $25,000 (including indirect costs) is allowed for each information network.
Proposals are due August 24, 2007.
Noble Foundation Grant
The Noble Foundation is engaged in basic plant biology research, forage improvement research and agricultural research, consultation and demonstration. Generally, these grants are geographically limited, with primary emphasis in Oklahoma. Proposals are considered only from tax-exempt organizations located within the United States. No loans or grants are made to individuals or for-profit entities.
Proposals are due September 1, 2007.
> More Funding Opportunities
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Farm & Food Leader's Training
September 20-21, 2007
A two-day workshop designed to expand grassroots leadership around the state of Texas on current issues relating to food and farm policies. Multiple groups, facilitated by the Texas Organic Farmers and Gardeners Assoc., are working to build the network of leaders who are informed and equipped to better communicate about farm and food policies in their communities.
Center for Environmental Farming Systems Fall Festival
September 15, 2007
Goldsboro, North Carolina
Join the CEFS Small Farm Unit as they celebrate sustainable agriculture in North Carolina. The Festival will include demonstrations, tours, hands-on activities for children, workshops and lots of fun! Enjoy great food featuring local products and live music throughout the day.
Family Farm Festival
September 9, 2007
High Falls, New York
This 4th annual festival celebrates sustainable agriculture, grass-fed meats, and family farms. The agenda features a Celebrity Chef Competition, sustainable energy arena, organic and biodynamic farm market, artisanal breads, cheeses, lacto-fermented foods, heritage breed farm animals, music all day powered by solar energy, draft horse hay rides, plenty of kids activities, and much more.
> More Events
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