• 21Sep

    New GE Corn and Soybean Varieties Approved: The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) approved three new genetically engineered (GE) crops for commercial sale in a Final Environmental Impact Statement (FEIS) Record of Decision published on the agency’s website… READ MORE

    Conservation Innovation Grant Recipients Announced: On Monday, September 15, the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) announced 47 new Conservation Innovation Grant (CIG) awards, totaling $15.7 million.  Recipients include universities, soil and water conservation districts, tribal organizations, resource conservation and development councils…READ MORE

    Funding Now Available for Farmer Risk Management Education: Four regional Extension Risk Management Education Centers jointly issued this year’s Requests for Applications (RFA) for their competitive grants program that provides funding for farmer-based risk management education, outreach and training. This program provides funding for projects led by cooperative extension, non-profit and other private organizations…READ MORE

    $68 Million in Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency Projects Announced: On Thursday, September 18, the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) announced a $68 million investment in 540 renewable energy and energy efficiency projects across the country through the Rural Energy for America Program (REAP)…. READ MORE

  • 20Sep

    Using Cover Crop Mixtures Webinar on October 14, 2014

    Join eOrganic for the first webinar of the fall 2014 season! In Using Cover Crop Mixtures to Achieve Multiple Goals on the Farm, a team of researchers at Penn State University will discuss the use of cover crop “cocktails” or mixtures to achieve weed suppression, nitrogen scavenging, nitrogen provisioning, and attracting beneficial insects and pollinators. Results from a study of winter cover crops in a grain and forage research project at the Penn State Rock Springs Research Farm and from several Pennsylvania farms will be shown. They will also review issues of cover crop timing, termination, and general management to aid in farmer insight and adoption of cover crop mixes.

    The webinar takes place on Tuesday, October 14 at 2PM Eastern Time (1PM Central, 12PM Mountain, 11AM Pacific Time). The presentation will last an hour, followed by 30 minutes for questions. Attendees will be able to type in questions for the speakers. The webinar is free and open to the public, and advance registration is required. Register now at https://www1.gotomeeting.com/register/131444560

    Read more »

  • 19Sep

    A California farm was recently fined $115,000 for violations extending from the use of volunteers.

    “A small-time vintner’s use of volunteer workers has put him out of business after the state squeezed him like a late-summer grape for $115,000 in fines — and sent a chill through the wine industry. The volunteers, some of them learning to make wine while helping out, were illegally unpaid laborers, and Westover Winery should have been paying them and paying worker taxes, the state Department of Industrial Relations said.”  – Read the full story from the San Jose Mercury News Here

    For-profit farms that use volunteers are taking risks. The story is from California but much of the same legal basis exists in other states.
    In a recorded webinar from last winter, Rachel Armstrong. and Attorney and Executive Director of Farm Commons explains the rules and risks. Folks can watch it anytime herehttp://farmcommons.org/workers-and-employees-understanding-farmers%E2%80%99-responsibilities
  • 18Sep

    NY Farm Viability Institute Requests Proposals for 2015 Grant Program

    The New York Farm Viability Institute (NYFVI) is excited to announce the opening of its 2015 competitive grants program. Applications for funds are currently being accepted, with a final deadline of November 16, 2014.

    NYFVI is a farmer-led nonprofit organization that works with farmers throughout NY State to identify and prioritize immediate needs, and then invests in research and outreach projects to meet those needs.

    NYFVI invests in projects that help farmers improve profitability or otherwise provide successful models for other farms to follow. The Institute seeks proposals that reflect the diversity of NY agriculture, incorporating diverse production sectors, farm sizes, production practices, and geographic regions. The NYFVI Board of Directors places an emphasis on funding projects that demonstrate real farm-level improvements during the life of the grant funding.

    For 2015, NYFVI will be funding projects in two distinct but complementary grant programs. Applications to the Agriculture Innovation Center grant program should focus on agricultural economic development, including business development, financial analysis, product marketing, and value-added agricultural products, among others. Applications to the Outreach and Applied Research grant program should focus on applied agricultural research, as well as outreach and education to promote new ideas and techniques.

    Potential applicants are strongly encouraged to read the full request for proposals for the applicable grant program, which can be found at www.NYFVI.org. All applications must be submitted online at db.NYFVI.org. For questions or help with proposal development, project leaders are encouraged to contact NYFVI Grant Manager Kevin Jablonski at KJablonski@NYFVI.org.

    NYFVI staff will be conducting a series of webinars to describe the funding opportunities and application requirements, and to help project leaders develop successful applications. Currently, there are two webinars scheduled:

    • Wednesday, October 8 at 10 a.m.
    • Thursday, October 23 at 6 p.m.

    If interested, please register for webinars at db.NYFVI.org. Additional webinars will be scheduled if demand exists. Be sure to follow NYFVI on Facebook for the latest updates.

    The New York Farm Viability Institute receives generous support from the Governor and the Legislature, through the New York State Department of Agriculture and Markets.

  • 17Sep
    Herd Management Internship / Cheese Making Internship in New Mexico – Fall 2014

    The Old Windmill Dairy is a 30 acre farmstead goat & cow dairy located on the out skirts of Albuquerque and Santa Fe. Since our opening on July 5th, 2007 we have increased sales at least 15% per year. We are grateful to participate in 6 state wide farmers markets each week, distribute through our local coop, supply 20 grocery/cheese stores and over 40 restaurants in the state. Our product line is intense and reflects our level of expertise in making artisan cheeses: brie, bloomy rinds, aged cheeses, goudas, cheddars and our own proprietary cheeses. All in all there are 42 styles of cheeses. Many of them have placed in the top 8% at the United States Champion Cheese Contest. Other cheese have earned gold medals and blue ribbons in national cheese contest.
    The selected intern will receive experience in herd management, milk production, sales, marketing and production. Average work week ranges between 35 and 40 hours per week. The intern will received days off, room and board and weekly pay.

    Responsibilities include but are not limited to:
    Primary Responsibilities – Making Cheese, Tending to Aging Cheeses, Packaging of cheeses, tracking of production, tracking pars, assisting staff
    Secondary duties – Feeding Animals, Watering Animals, Milking Goats and Cows, Tending to animal needs, Hoof trimming, Vaccinations, Birthing, Feeding Baby Goats, Selling at Farmers Markets, Customer Service, Helping with Farm Events, Helping with Cheese Production

    Requirements: Applicant should be self motivated organized and eager to help. High School Graduate or GED. Farm or Dairy experienced preferred. Pursued or completed degrees in culinary arts, agriculture or herd management prefered. The farm is a non-smoking, drug free environement. We are seeking applicants that want to learn the craft and committ to a minimum of 6 months. Prefer applicants that can stay 9 to 12 months.

    Apply to info@towdairy.com  attention Ed and Michael Lobaugh phone 505-384-0033website theoldwindmilldairy.com

  • 16Sep

    Boot Camp for Farmers – Financial and Food Safety Success – Monday, September 22, 2014, 6:00 – 8:30 pm

    Workshop will be held via webinar: https://connect.msu.edu/upfe/; Webinar is Free, please RSVP below

    Note: If you have not been on an adobe connect webinar before, please use this link to test your internet connection ahead of time:  http://connect.msu.edu/common/help/en/support/meeting_test.htm

    The U.P. Food Exchange, in partnership with Morse Marketing Connections, would like to invite you to a free webinar to learn about potential ways to grow your business and connect to new markets in the Upper Peninsula.

    Financial and food safety experts will share successful ways specialty crop farmers are opening doors to new markets through improved financial readiness and food safety practices.

    Ann Herrington of Greenstone Farm Credit will be presenting on financial literacy and business planning for profitability.  In addition, the U.P. Food Exchange will provide an update on how to reach new markets and the resources they are providing regarding food safety including the Group GAP pilot.  Please RSVP by Friday, September 19, 2014, by calling 906-635-6368 or by contacting walkmich@msu.edu.

  • 15Sep

    2014 Growers Academy  in Virginia

    An 6-session learning/training series focused on sustainable farming methods and business models

    September 23 – October 28, 2014 (Tuesdays, 6-9 pm • Wytheville, Virginia)

    Pre-registration by Thursday, 9/18th

    FOR WHO? New, dreamed about, and growing or transitioning agricultural businesses.  The course is a tailored and comprehensive approach to farming as a small business, so you can leave with renewed confidence and practical information and actions to make your farming effort whatever size you want it to be. Read more »

  • 12Sep

    Job: Organic Production Specialist – SpringRain Farm and Orchard in Washington State

    SpringRain Farm & Orchard is a 28-acre certified organic farm located in Chimacum, WA, which is located south of Port Townsend on the Olympic Peninsula. The farm is designed to use an ecologically-based diversified production system that focuses on meat, eggs, fruit, herbs, and vegetables. We grow a wide variety of small fruits such as strawberries, blueberries, raspberries, currants, and gooseberries along with orchard fruits such as apple, pear, and plums.  We specialize in year-around greenhouse crops with winter salad production and summer production of basil, eggplant, and tomatoes, as well as asparagus, garlic, and miscellaneous specialty vegetables.  Our livestock production includes layer poultry, turkeys, meat chickens, meat sheep, rabbits, and bees.  We operate a full season internship program and host short-term volunteers throughout the year.  Our marketing targets local retail outlets, restaurants, farmers markets, and on-farm sales. Read more »

  • 11Sep
    Apply Today for the Beginning Women Farmers Training Program in CT!

    If you are a beginning (less than ten years experience) women farmer in Connecticut and you are interested in joining the program, we are now accepting applications for the 2014/2015 session. The training begins in early November and consists of 10 all-day Saturday sessions. The first six are throughout the winter and will be held at Goodwin College in East Hartford, CT. The four remaining sessions are on on-farm at different locations throughout the state. Click HERE for an online application.

    From a recent graduate:
    All the individuals (peers and instructors/mentors) I have meet during this class have taught me something, and have helped me unearth my own self confidence in myself along with the weaknesses I struggle with. And it feels wonderful to have a small group of people who have a similar mindset or love for farming, the land, and good food. All of this has nurtured the flame and love I have for this life style I live.“-Jessica Kroeber

    The 2014/2015 dates:

    November 1, November 22, December 13, January 17, January 24, February 7, February 28, March 21, April 11, May 2, May 16 (snow date)

    While there is a small fee to join the program in the Northeast, scholarships are available for those in need of financial assistance. If you have any questions or would like to discuss the program, please contact Deb Legge, Connecticut Co-coordinator or call 203-308-2584. To learn more about the current program, past sessions and Holistic Management International, click HERE.

  • 11Sep

    Grow Your Farm Skills this Fall/Winter from the Comfort of Your Home! Online farming course registration begins now.

    The Cornell Small Farms Program and Cornell Cooperative Extension offer a menu of 12 online courses each Fall and Winter to help farmers develop their businesses. These 5- to 7-week online courses cost $200 total for up to 4 members of the same farm to attend. They are an amazing opportunity to discover new resources, build your farm plan, hear from successful farmers, and develop a support network of peers. Courses consist of a weekly real-time webinar followed by readings, discussion forums, and homework on your own time.

    Students successfully completing a course are eligible to receive a 0% interest loan of up to $10,000 through Kiva Zip!
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