Mike Lewis Tag

I once had a platoon sergeant who liked to say, “the best defense is having a diversity of offense.” It wasn’t until recently that I made this connection to my farm and to my work at NCAT. One of the most common topics that I speak with farmers about is how to best diversify their operation to successfully weather the current reality we find ourselves in.
By Mike Lewis, NCAT Sustainable Agriculture Specialist...

This video is the fourth and final webinar in NCAT's four-part hemp webinar series featuring the nation's leading hemp experts and focusing on hemp production and cultivation on the West Coast. This webinar focuses on current and future federal hemp regulation, testing and compliance, plant breeding and seed certification, California and Oregon's current regulatory climate, how to obtain licenses, and hemp crop insurance options. Our panel of experts includes: Mike Lewis, a sustainable agriculture specialist with NCAT at the Northeast Regional Office; Jody McGinness, the Executive Director of the Hemp Industries Association; Courtney Moran, LL.M, founding principal of EARTH Law, LLC;...

Diversity is a key insurance strategy on many farms, as multiple revenue streams can help keep a farm more stable in trying times. Most successful farmers I know employ this strategy and they are always on the lookout for new, higher-value enterprises to try out. The same is true on my farm in Kentucky. Last year, a restaurant client asked if we could raise pastured quail for their menu. They currently purchase 600 quail annually but believe that locally sourced quail will double their annual demand. 
By Mike Lewis, Sustainable Agriculture Specialist...

Jane Harrod and her family operate a multi-generational farm in Clays Ferry, Kentucky. In this episode of Voices from the Field, NCAT specialist Mike Lewis sits down with Jane to talk about the history of her family land and how a highway divided the land and changed the farm’s economic outlook. A well-known Kentucky native-species specialist, Jane talks about her family’s vision for the future of their farm using an ecologically driven decision-making process. An early adopter of hemp production in Kentucky, Jane also discusses some of the challenges and successes she has had producing this crop. ATTRA Resources: Agroforestry: An Overview ...

In this episode of Voices from the Field, NCAT Sustainable Agriculture Specialist Mike Lewis sits down with Wayne Riley, executive director of the Laurel County African American Heritage Center in London, Kentucky, to discuss his work in the community, including the challenges and benefits that have arisen during the Covid-19 pandemic. The Laurel County African American Heritage Center is a nonprofit founded in 2004 to preserve African American history in Laurel County, Kentucky, and devoted to helping those in the area increase their self-reliance and take greater control of the social and financial aspects of their lives. The heritage center has...

In this episode of Voices from the Field, NCAT Sustainable Agriculture Specialist Mike Lewis sits down with Dr. Tom Webster from Kentucky State University Cooperative Extension Services to talk about the role pollinators play in farm ecosystems, how to attract more pollinators, and how to protect them when they arrive. It all comes down to planning, and Dr. Webster offers some great strategies for increasing pollinator health and diversity on your farm. ATTRA Resources: A Pictorial Guide to Hedgerow Plants for Beneficial Insects Alternative Pollinators: Native Bees Contact Mike Lewis via email at mikel@ncat.org. Please complete a brief survey to let us know...

In this episode of Voices from the Field, National Center for Appropriate Technology Southeast Regional Director Margo Hale talks with Mike Lewis, a new NCAT sustainable agriculture specialist. From his Kentucky farm, Mike explains that farming is part of his DNA. Mike is a military veteran who founded Growing Warriors, a veteran-oriented food security project. In addition, Mike became the first federally permitted hemp farmer in the U.S. since Prohibition. Listen to his conversation with Margo Hale to learn more about his background, what brought him to NCAT, and the expertise he’ll bring to the sustainable farmers and ranchers we...