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Weekly Harvest Newsletter

Sustainable Agriculture News Briefs - September 26, 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.

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News & Resources
* Glynwood Center Announces Harvest Award Winners
* Georgia Starts "I'm a Local" Campaign
* USDA Announces Value-Added Producer Grant Recipients
* USDA Awards Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency Grants
* Sow the Seeds Fund to Offer Flood Aid

Funding Opportunities
* Strategic Agricultural Initiative, EPA Region 4
* North Central SARE Diversity Research and Education Grant
* National Research Initiative (NRI) Competitive Grants Program

Coming Events
* Oilseed and Biodiesel Production Workshop
* Sustainable Ag Expo
* International Holistic Management Conference

News & Resources

Glynwood Center Announces Harvest Award Winners
The Harvest Awards were created by Glynwood Center in Cold Spring, New York in 2003 to highlight the creative work by individuals and organizations from across the country that do an exceptional job of supporting local and regional agriculture and increase access to fresh, healthy food. The 2007 winners will be honored in an October 22 ceremony in New York. The Glynwood Farmer Harvest Award goes to family farmers in the Organic Valley Family of Farms. The Glynwood Harvest Good Neighbor Award goes to Grow Montana, a project led by the National Center for Appropriate Technology. The Glynwood Harvest Connecting Communities, Farmers and Food Award goes to the Community Food Security Center in Tucson, Arizona, and the Glynwood Harvest Award for The Wave of the Future will be presented to Added Value and Herban Solutions of Brooklyn, New York.

Georgia Starts "I'm a Local" Campaign
Georgia Organics is celebrating Georgia’s local, sustainable, and organic farmers and their harvest this month with Eat Local Week (September 20-30) which kicks off a local foods campaign. The "I'm a Local" Campaign is intended to educate consumers about how they can find locally grown, sustainable foods in the state of Georgia. Beginning with a 10-day festival, focusing on the benefits of consuming local fare, the campaign will continue throughout the year by identifying and promoting sustainable, healthy foods at markets, restaurants and groceries throughout the state of Georgia.
Related ATTRA Publication:   Local Food Directory

USDA Announces Value-Added Producer Grant Recipients
The USDA announced the selection of 162 recipients in 40 states and Puerto Rico to receive $22.7 million through the Value-Added Producer Grant program. Value-Added Producer Grants may be used for planning activities or to provide working capital to market value-added agricultural products and farm-based renewable energy projects. Grants will fund projects such as a feasibility study of marketing biofuels from a facility in Arkansas and marketing goat-milk cheese in Wisconsin. A complete list of grant recipients is available at USDA's web site at http://www.rurdev.usda.gov

USDA Awards Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency Grants
USDA has announced that 345 proposals in 37 states have been selected to receive a total of $18.2 million for renewable energy and energy efficiency projects. The grant and loan guarantee/grant combinations are being awarded through USDA's Section 9006 Renewable Energy Systems and Energy Efficiency Improvements program. It provides financial assistance to agricultural producers and rural small businesses to install renewable energy generation systems or to make energy efficiency improvements. Of the $18.2 million total, $13.4 million are grants and $4.8 million are guaranteed loans. A complete list of the selected recipients is posted on the USDA Rural Development Web site.

Sow the Seeds Fund to Offer Flood Aid
Recent flooding in Minnesota and Wisconsin has hit some farmers very hard. To help, Sow the Seeds Fund, in conjunction with co-ops, farmers markets, local food retailers, restaurants and individuals, is gathering donations for flood relief. A volunteer Flood Relief Steering Committee has been formed to create the guidelines and procedures for distributing the donations. Donations are being accepted online, and at numerous co-ops and businesses across the upper Midwest.

> More Breaking News

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Funding Opportunities

Strategic Agricultural Initiative, EPA Region 4
Environmental Protection Agency, Region 4, announces the availability of funds and solicits application packages to help support efforts by the agricultural community to transition to lower risk pesticides and pest management practices in agricultural production, resulting in a sustainable food system. The emphasis is on food crops, however other agricultural commodities (including ornamentals) will be considered, especially where there are significant demonstrable environmental concerns. The program supports grants for education, extension, demonstration, and implementation projects. The total estimated funding available under this competitive opportunity is $700,000. All projects must occur in one or more of the Region 4 states: Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina, and Tennessee.
Proposals are due October 31, 2007.

North Central SARE Diversity Research and Education Grant
The Diversity Research and Education Grant Program is a new North Central Region-SARE grant program. Its purpose is to fund people and/or projects that can help NCR-SARE reach and work with underserved audiences to improve agricultural sustainability in the North Central Region.
Proposals are due November 30, 2007.

National Research Initiative (NRI) Competitive Grants Program
CSREES requests applications for the NRI Program for FY 2008 to support (1) high priority fundamental and mission-linked research of importance in the biological, environmental, physical, and social sciences relevant to agriculture, food, the environment, and rural communities and (2) competitively awarded research, extension, and education grants addressing key issues of national and regional importance to agriculture, forestry, and related topics. In FY 2008, CSREES anticipates that approximately $190 million will be available for support of this program. Application deadlines vary by program, ranging from November 2007 to June 2008. Federal agencies, national laboratories, other research institutions and organizations, private organizations or corporations may be eligible to apply for research grants. Program Areas include: Agribusiness Markets and Trade, Agricultural Prosperity for Small and Medium-Sized Farms, Air Quality, Biobased Products and Bioenergy Production, Biology of Weedy and Invasive Species, Food Safety, Global Change Initiatives, Human Nutrition and Obesity, Improving Food Quality and Value, Rural Development, Soil Processes, and Water and Watersheds.
Proposals are due November 14, 2005.

> More Funding Opportunities

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Coming Events

Oilseed and Biodiesel Production Workshop
October 30-31, 2007
Polson and Pablo, Montana

This Oilseeds for Fuel, Feed, and the Future workshop is designed for Montana farmers interested in learning more about how to produce and use biodiesel or how to raise oilseed crops. Topics that will be covered include the economics of oilseed production, crushing and processing; biodiesel quality issues; small scale and commercial biodiesel production and market trends in oilseeds and co-products. The National Center for Appropriate Technology joins several other sponsors in presenting this workshop.

Sustainable Ag Expo
November 1-2, 2007
Paso Robles, California

This event offers crop-specific and general seminars featuring researchers, extension consultants and growers. Topics addressed are appropriate for row crops, strawberries, vineyards, orchards, nurseries & more. Continuing education credits are offered. A trade show will also take place.

International Holistic Management Conference
November 1-4, 2007
Albuquerque, New Mexico

"From the Ground Up: Practical Solutions to Complex Problems" is four exciting days packed with keynote addresses, powerful and educational workshops on the topics that matter to you most, and special events. Keynotes are Joel Salatin, Temple Grandin, Thom Hartmann, and Allan Savory. Whether your focus is land desertification, food security, public lands, meeting consumer demand for organics, or global warming, you’ll exchange ideas with knowledgeable experts and discover the solutions that are working now.

> More Events

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