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ATTRA Sustainable Agriculture

Weekly Harvest Newsletter
Sustainable Agriculture News Briefs - October 7, 2020

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

  • Local Agricultural Marketing Program Grants Announced
  • Iowa Organic Farmers Report on Research to Control Squash Vine Borer
  • Online Platform Connects California Landowners with Grazing Animals
  • Food System Transformation Highlighted in New Book
  • New Model for Arid-Land Farming Based on Wild Food Crops
  • Analysis Identifies More Pesticides Harmful to Bees

Funding Opportunities

  • FACT's 2020 Fund-a-Farmer Grants
  • Southern SARE On-Farm Research Grant
  • Montana Growth Through Agriculture

Coming Events

  • American Small Farm Webinar Series
  • Organic Growers' Research and Information-Sharing Network Grain Workshop
  • OSU Extension Beginning Farmer Workshop

News & Resources

Local Agricultural Marketing Program Grants Announced
USDA Agricultural Marketing Service (AMS) announced awards of $27 million in grant funding through the Farmers Market and Local Food Promotion Program (FMLFPP) and $9.3 million in grant funding through the new Regional Food System Partnerships (RFSP) grant program. Lists of the recipients are available online.

Iowa Organic Farmers Report on Research to Control Squash Vine Borer
Practical Farmers of Iowa has released a report discussing the results of on-farm research on squash vine borer that compared five methods of organic control. Farmers Julia Slocum and Mark Quee found that row cover was the most effective control practice, keeping more plants alive and producing higher yields. The trial also showed that Bt injections were effective but more labor-intensive. The research report is available online.

Related ATTRA Publication: Squash Bug and Squash Vine Borer: Organic Controls

Online Platform Connects California Landowners with Grazing Animals
Match.Graze is a free online platform created by University of California Cooperative Extension that connects California landowners who want to have their property grazed with livestock owners who can provide vegetation management services. Grazing can help reduce the accumulation of fire fuels, even on steep and remote land. To find a local grazing partner, visit MatchGraze.com, set up a free account, create a pin on the map, and make a match.

Related ATTRA Publication: Tips for Marketing Sheep and Goat Products: Vegetation Management Services

Food System Transformation Highlighted in New Book
The UN- and World Bank-led International Assessment of Agricultural Knowledge, Science and Technology for Development (IAASTD) is an assessment of global agriculture published in 2009. Now, 40 eminent food system experts have taken stock of changes to the food system during the past decade in a follow-on book online, titled Transformation of Our Food Systems—The making of a paradigm shift.

New Model for Arid-Land Farming Based on Wild Food Crops
Scientists from the U.S. Southwest and Mexico published a new model for farming in arid regions. The researchers propose selecting wild food crops already adapted to extreme conditions, in order to reduce climate disruptions to food security, human health, and rural economies. They say that agriculture in arid regions should shift away from water-consumptive, heat-intolerant, annual plants to utilize no-till cropping of hardy perennials that are heat- and drought-tolerant.

Analysis Identifies More Pesticides Harmful to Bees
New analysis from The University of Texas at Austin showed that the pesticides flupyradifurone (sold under the brand name Sivanto®) and sulfoxaflor (sold under the name Transform® WG) have harmful effects on bees, similar to neonicotinoids. This analysis revealed that the insecticides also showed signs of harming other beneficial insects, such as wild bumblebees and lacewings. In addition to increased mortality, the pesticides reduced reproductive ability and made pollinators less efficient foragers.

>>More Breaking News

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Funding Opportunities

FACT's 2020 Fund-a-Farmer Grants
Food Animal Concerns Trust (FACT) awards competitive grants up to $2,500 to working, independent family farmers located in the United States who raise beef cattle, bison, broiler chickens, dairy cows, goats, laying hens, pigs, sheep, and/or turkeys. Grants are offered for farmers who are pursuing animal welfare certification, for welfare-certified farmers, and for farmers to improve or expand pasture for their animals.
Applications must be submitted online by December 1, 2020.

Southern SARE On-Farm Research Grant
The Southern Region Sustainable Agriculture Research & Education (SSARE) program is accepting proposals for On-Farm Research Grants up to $20,000. Agriculture professionals in Cooperative Extension, Natural Resources Conservation Service, universities, and NGOs, as well as government and non-government organizations who regularly work with farmers and ranchers, are invited to apply for a grant that provides the opportunity to conduct on-farm research in sustainable agriculture.
The proposal submission deadline is December 4, 2020.

Montana Growth Through Agriculture
The Growth Through Agriculture (GTA) program is a grant-and-loan program to strengthen and diversify Montana's agricultural industry through the development of new agricultural products and processes. Examples of eligible project activities involve equipment purchases, construction costs, advertising and promotion, and consultant services for engineering. A 1:1 match is required. Maximum funding is $150,000, made up of $50,000 maximum in grants and up to $100,000 in loans.
Applications are due by December 7, 2020.

>>More Funding Opportunities

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Coming Events

American Small Farm Webinar Series
October 15, 22, and 29, 2020
Online
This free, three-part American Small Farm Webinar Series is presented by the Ozark Farmers Agricultural Cooperative, University of Missouri Extension, and Missouri State University Darr College of Agriculture. Sessions cover specialty crops, protected culture, and value-added production.

Organic Growers' Research and Information-Sharing Network Grain Workshop
October 19, 26, and November 2, 2020
Online

The Organic Growers' Research and Information-Sharing Network is presenting a series of workshops on growing and production of grain crops. The series includes three intensive 75-minute online short courses with video field days/workshops taught by farmers and NE Grain Experts on farms and/or at processing venues.

OSU Extension Beginning Farmer Workshop
October 16, 23, and 30, 2020
Oklahoma City, Oklahoma
Oklahoma State University Extension is offering a series of three full-day workshops for people interested in starting their own livestock enterprise and looking for the best avenue to pursue that dream. The workshops will focus on risk management, general herd health, animal nutrition and industry overviews for cattle, sheep and goats, and poultry.

>>More Events

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New ATTRA Publication
Microbial Inoculants

Question of the Week
Do dung beetles benefit or harm my pasture?

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Conservation Assessment Ranking Tool (CART): Deep Dive
October 8, 2020
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