This blog is for Polk County Florida small farms and pesticide applicators as a method of communication and sharing information. This blog is administered by the University of Florida IFAS Extension Polk County Extension Agent, Mary Beth Henry.
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
Report on Bio-Extensive Market Farming Published
Survey Collecting Input on Food Safety at Farmers Markets
Terminating Cover Crops with Sheep Benefits Organic Farmers
NRCS Spreadsheet Tool Helps Farmers Determine Economics of Cover Crops
Western SARE Introduces Western Sustainability Pioneer Award
World Health Organization Releases Assessment of Carcinogenicity of Organophosphate Pesticides
Farmers Market Promotion Program
Kaiser Conservation Endowment
Montana Specialty Crop Block Grant
National Hmong American Farmers Annual Farm Conference
Piedmont Farm Tour
California Farm to School Conference
News & Resources
Report on Bio-Extensive Market Farming Published The Kerr Center for Sustainable Agriculture has released Market Farming with Rotations and Cover Crops: An Organic Bio-Extensive System. The 70-page report outlines how to control grasses and weeds and build soil life, health, and fertility organically through cover crops and rotations.
Survey Collecting Input on Food Safety at Farmers Markets The Farmers Market Food Safety Program is seeking input from market vendors and managers regarding their opinions and experiences with food safety at farmers markets. This program seeks to enhance food-safety practices at farmers markets by developing educational materials and operational tools. To give your valuable input on food safety at farmers markets, you can take an online survey.
NRCS Spreadsheet Tool Helps Farmers Determine Economics of Cover Crops USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service has developed The Cover Crop Economic Decision Support Tool, a spreadsheet that helps farmers, landowners, and others make informed decisions when considering whether to add cover crops to their systems. The tool offers a partial budget analysis, derived from data that farmers enter.
Western SARE Introduces Western Sustainability Pioneer Award To bring increased awareness to sustainable agriculture leaders and their work, Western SARE has announced that it is accepting nominations for its first Western Sustainability Pioneer Award. Nominations for this award may be made by anyone and are due May 15, 2015.
World Health Organization Releases Assessment of Carcinogenicity of Organophosphate Pesticides The International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC), an agency of the World Health Organization, has assessed the carcinogenicity of five organophosphate pesticides. In the IARC evaluations, the herbicide glyphosate and the insecticides malathion and diazinon were classified as probably carcinogenic to humans. The insecticides tetrachlorvinphos and parathion were classified as possibly carcinogenic to humans.
Farmers Market Promotion Program The Farmers Market Promotion Program offers grants to increase domestic consumption of, and access to, locally and regionally produced agricultural products, and to develop new market opportunities for farm and ranch operations serving local markets. The maximum grant is $100,000; the minimum award is $15,000. Applications are due May 14, 2015.
Kaiser Conservation Endowment Washington State University and University of Idaho are soliciting proposals to the Verle Kaiser Conservation Endowment for promotion and demonstration of conservation practices targeting soil erosion. Proposals are sought on the training of college and K-12 students and constituents, including curriculum development, field trips, teaching aids, audio/visual or other educational-related activities. Funds are open to Washington State University, University of Idaho, Natural Resource Conservation Service (NRCS), Conservation Districts, and colleges in Washington and Idaho. Proposals are due by April 10, 2015.
Montana Specialty Crop Block Grant Montana has $1.3 million in federal funding available through the Specialty Crop Block Grant (SCBG) program to enhance the competitiveness of Montana specialty crops. Eligible projects include education on the value of specialty crops, improving efficiency of distribution systems, assisting entities in the development of good agricultural practices, pest and disease control, improving variety development, and sustainable production practices. Proposals are due by April 22, 2015.
National Hmong American Farmers Annual Farm Conference April 30, 2015 Fresno, California National Hmong American Farmers, Inc. will focus this conference on "Coming Together in the Asian American Pacific Islander Farming Community." They have invited Latino and Latina farmers, beginning farmers, and farm workers to join in this sixth national event.
Piedmont Farm Tour April 25-26, 2015 Alamance, Chatham, Durham, Orange, and Person counties, North Carolina Learn about the Triangle region's local and organic farm and food scene. This self-guided tour offers the opportunity to visit any of 40 participating stops over the course of two afternoons.
California Farm to School Conference May 4-6, 2015 Pacific Grove, California This conference will offer a series of workshops, panels, and discussions. Farmers, distributors, government representatives, procurement officers, educators, and food program administrators will attend.
Weekly Harvest Archives Digital versions of recent and archived Weekly Harvest newsletters are available online.
ATTRA was developed and is managed by the National Center for Appropriate Technology (NCAT). The program 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.