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Weekly Harvest Newsletter
Sustainable Agriculture News Briefs - September 10, 2014

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

  • Agricultural Conservation Easement Program Funding Awarded
  • Barnraiser Offers Crowdfunding Platform for Sustainable Agriculture
  • Organic Cost Share Resources Issued by NOP
  • CSP Renewal Deadline Approaches, Reminds NSAC
  • Livestock Producers Told to Enroll in Disaster Assistance Program by October 1
  • San Francisco to Offer Urban Farming Incentive

Funding Opportunities

  • Northeast SARE Partnership Grants
  • Southern SARE Producer Grants
  • Agricultural Safety and Health Council of America Safety Grants Program

Coming Events

  • On-Farm Habitat Restoration Field Tours
  • Small Ruminant Production Conference
  • Life Cycle Assessment of Foods Conference

News & Resources

Agricultural Conservation Easement Program Funding Awarded
USDA has announced the award of $328 million through the Agricultural Conservation Easement Program (ACEP). ACEP consolidates the former Farm and Ranch Lands Protection Program, Grasslands Reserve Program, and Wetlands Reserve Program. Approximately 380 projects nationwide were selected to protect and restore 32,000 acres of prime farmland, 45,000 acres of grasslands, and 52,000 acres of wetlands.

Barnraiser Offers Crowdfunding Platform for Sustainable Agriculture
Crowdfunding site Barnraiser introduces the people behind sustainable food and farming projects and offers members an opportunity to fund their success. The site is now accepting any project of $2,000 or more that moves the needle forward toward healthy, sustainable and soulful, and humane food and farming. Projects are created online and shared by the creators with their social circles and community. If a project meets or exceeds funding goals when the deadline arrives, then all of the backers that have pledged support are charged and the project receives funding.

Organic Cost Share Resources Issued by NOP
USDA National Organic Program has announced a revised Frequently Asked Questions document and a new fact sheet to support the Organic Certification Cost Share Programs. These programs reimburse individual organic operators up to 75% of their certification costs up to $750 per category of certification.

CSP Renewal Deadline Approaches, Reminds NSAC
The National Sustainable Agriculture Coalition has issued a reminder that farmers and ranchers who enrolled in the Conservation Stewardship Program (CSP) in 2010 have until September 12 to re-enroll. For those interested in enrolling in the program now, CSP has a continual application process. NSAC reports that the cutoff date for 2015 applications will likely be fairly early in the calendar year.

Livestock Producers Told to Enroll in Disaster Assistance Program by October 1
USDA is encouraging livestock producers who have suffered eligible disaster-related losses to act to secure assistance by September 30, 2014. Congressionally mandated payment reductions of 7.3% will take place as of that date. The Livestock Indemnity Program, the Tree Assistance Program, and the Noninsured Disaster Assistance Program Frost Freeze payments will also be cut by 7.3% on October 1.

San Francisco to Offer Urban Farming Incentive
San Francisco is the first city to offer a financial incentive for urban farming under California's Urban Agriculture Incentive Zones Act, reports The San Francisco Chronicle. Owners of empty lots who agree to have their property used for commercial or educational agriculture for five years or more will have lower taxes. Vacant lots between one-tenth of an acre and three acres are eligible.

>> More Breaking News

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Funding Opportunities

Northeast SARE Partnership Grants
Partnership Grants are reserved for agricultural service providers--extension staff, nonprofits, consultants, state departments of agriculture, and others working in the agricultural community--who want to conduct on-farm demonstrations, research, marketing, and other projects with farmers as active cooperators. The Partnership guidelines have been expanded to incorporate proposals formerly submitted under the Sustainable Community Grant.
The application deadline is November 4, 2014.

Southern SARE Producer Grants
Southern Sustainable Agriculture Research & Education has issued a call for proposals for the 2014 Producer Grants, intended for farmers/ranchers and farmer/rancher organizations throughout the Southern region. Projects may be funded for up to two years and up to $10,000 for an individual producer or $15,000 for a producer organization.
Proposal submission deadline is November 17, 2014.

Agricultural Safety and Health Council of America Safety Grants Program
Grants up to $10,000 are being offered by the Agricultural Safety and Health Council of America to provide financial support to promote evidence-based safety/health strategies addressing farmers, ranchers, and agricultural workers.
Applications are due January 7, 2015.

>> More Funding Opportunities

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Coming Events

On-Farm Habitat Restoration Field Tours
October 15-16, 2014
Tres Pinos and Watsonville, California
Join Wild Farm Alliance for one or both of two field tours showcasing on-farm habitat restoration projects. Tour the habitat restoration sites and learn how the projects benefit the farms and the wild. Field Tour 1 covers Riparian Restoration along Tres Pinos Creek on Hain Ranch and Field Tour 2 explores Habitat Restoration at Monkeyflower Ranch.

Small Ruminant Production Conference
October 16, 2014
Ocala, Florida

The Third Annual Small Ruminant Production Conference will focus on goat and sheep health, nutrition, production efficiency, and management. Topics will include common diseases, internal parasite management, rotational grazing, economics and marketing, enterprise development, and FAMACHA training.

Life Cycle Assessment of Foods Conference
October 8-10, 2014
San Francisco, California

The American Center for Life Cycle Assessment will host this international conference, which unites the scientific community with food industry professionals, researchers, academics, and policymakers. The event combines a scientific academic focus with a food expo.

>> More Events

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New ATTRA Publication
Organic Specialty Crop Production In Texas: A Grower's Handbook

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