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ATTRA - National Sustainable Agriculture Information Service

Weekly Harvest Newsletter
Sustainable Agriculture News Briefs - December 26, 2012

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

There’s Still Time to Help Us Create Positive Change
The end of the year is rapidly approaching, but there's still time to support worthwhile projects at NCAT. We're working hard to promote sustainable solutions in agriculture, energy, and community development, and your help would mean so much to us and to the many people who are benefitting from our projects. Make a charitable donation to NCAT before December 31 , and you'll still qualify for a 2012 tax deduction.  Visit http://bit.ly/UPoZBW to learn more and to donate online.

News & Resources

  • Report Explores Options for Increasing Local Food Consumption in Western Washington
  • Proceedings from 'Strengthening Agriculture's Intrastructure' Available Online
  • Good Agricultural Practices Group Pilot Project Results Reported
  • Southern New England Farmers Surveyed on Equipment Needs and Sharing Arrangements
  • Webinar Scheduled on USDA Women and Hispanic Farmers Settlement
  • Report Makes Recommendations for Strategic Investment in Small Farms

Funding Opportunities

  • Biotechnology Risk Assessment Research Grants Program
  • Sodexo Foundation Youth Grants
  • Sow It Forward Grants

Coming Events

  • Organicology
  • Virginia Biological Farming Conference
  • Missouri Organic Association Annual Conference

News & Resources

Report Explores Options for Increasing Local Food Consumption in Western Washington
Planting the Seeds: Moving to More Local Food in Western Washington summarizes findings of the Western Washington Foodshed Study, a project conducted by American Farmland Trust and the University of Washington. The report looks at why eating locally matters and compares the effectiveness of four options for moving to a more local food supply.

Proceedings from 'Strengthening Agriculture's Intrastructure' Available Online
In early December, Western SARE hosted a sold-out conference on "Strengthening Agriculture's Infrastructure: Adding Value, Breaking Down Barriers, Increasing Profits." Proceedings of this conference are now available online, including videos and webinars of full sessions and plenaries, as well as presentations by individual speakers.

Good Agricultural Practices Group Pilot Project Results Reported
The Wallace Center has released a report and assessment of the Good Natured Family Farms Group Good Agricultural Practices pilot project. The pilot project has so far proven that the "group approach" strategy is feasible to address market requirements for third-party GAP verification. The program will now develop a credible group-certification system. The full report is available online in PDF.

Southern New England Farmers Surveyed on Equipment Needs and Sharing Arrangements
Rhode Island Association of Conservation Districts has released Farm Equipment Needs and Cooperative Solutions for Southern New England. The 24-page report is the result of a project designed to determine whether a shared-use equipment bank could help farmers in Massachusetts, Connecticut, and Rhode Island keep their businesses economically viable. The survey showed that decentralized equipment-sharing arrangements are likely to be most effective, and that smaller, less-established farms were more interested in participating in a shared-use equipment bank.

Webinar Scheduled on USDA Women and Hispanic Farmers Settlement
Women, Food and Agriculture Network will host a free, open webinar on January 8 on the Women and Hispanic Farmers Settlement. "Do I qualify for a settlement? How do I prove it? How do I submit a claim? Where can I get assistance with filing my claim? Who has more information?" are some of the questions that will be addressed. Those who allege discrimination by the USDA based on being female or Hispanic in making or servicing farm loans during certain periods between 1981 and 2000, and who qualify and submit a claim by March 25, could receive a cash award of up to $50,000.

Report Makes Recommendations for Strategic Investment in Small Farms
The Cornell Small Farms Program announces the release of 2012 Recommendations for Strategic Investments in New York's Small Farms. This report highlights the top eight priorities for enhancing the viability of small farms in New York and provides concise justifications, suggested actions, and relevant resources for each. Recommendations are intended for anyone interested in supporting the long-term viability of New York's small-farm sector.

>> More Breaking News

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Funding Opportunities

Biotechnology Risk Assessment Research Grants Program
USDA National Institute of Food and Agriculture requests applications for the Biotechnology Risk Assessment Research Grants Program for fiscal year 2013. The program supports environmental assessment research concerning the introduction of genetically engineered organisms into the environment. NIFA anticipates that the amount available will be approximately $4 million. Applications may be submitted by any United States public or private research or educational institution or organization.
Letters of inquiry are due by January 22, 2013. Full proposals are due by March 21, 2013.

Sodexo Foundation Youth Grants
Sodexo Foundation Youth Grants of $500 are available for youth-led service projects that bring together young people, families, Sodexo employees, and other community members to address childhood hunger. U.S. young people ages five to 25 are eligible to apply. Projects will take place on or around Global Youth Service Day, April 26-28, 2013.
Applications are due January 31, 2013.

Sow It Forward Grants
Sow It Forward is the grants and partnership program of Kitchen Gardeners International. It offers grants for nonprofits (schools, churches, community gardens, senior programs, etc.) interested in starting or expanding food gardens that are of general benefit to their community. The $600 grant package includes a cash grant and gardening resources.
Grant applications are due by January 11, 2013.

>> More Funding Opportunities

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Coming Events

Organicology
February 7-9, 2013
Portland, Oregon

Organicology is an interactive educational format created by four organic trade organizations. The 2013 conference will focus on sustainability, farming, and seed issues, as well as timely topics including the impacts of climate change on agriculture and genetically engineered crops.

Virginia Biological Farming Conference
February 8-9, 2013
Richmond, Virginia

"Healthy Soil, Healthy Crops, Healthy Livestock" features knowledgeable speakers, informative sessions, and outstanding networking opportunities. The conference also features local foods and a Fresh Chef Trifecta.

Missouri Organic Association Annual Conference
February 7-9, 2013
Springfield, Missouri

In addition to organic educational sessions, the conference will feature workshops on solar panels, bio-diesel, and more. There will also be a two-day Organic Poultry Symposium and Organic Certification Workshop, and a one-day Wholesale Success workshop.

>> More Events

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Weekly Harvest and ATTRAnews Archives
Digital versions of recent and archived Weekly Harvest and ATTRAnews newsletters are available online. ATTRAnews is the newsletter of ATTRA - National Sustainable Agriculture Information Service.

National Center for Appropriate Technology (NCAT) logo and link to home page The National Sustainable Agriculture Information Service - ATTRA - was developed and is managed by the National Center for Appropriate Technology (NCAT). The project is funded through a cooperative agreement with the United States Department of Agriculture's Rural Business-Cooperative Service.

Visit the NCAT website for more information on our other sustainable agriculture and energy projects.

© 2012 NCAT

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