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Sustainable Agriculture: NEWS AND RESOURCES FROM THE FIELD

From: National Campaign For Sustainable Agriculture
http://www.sustainableagriculture.net/

THE NATIONAL CAMPAIGN FOR SUSTAINABLE AGRICULTURE IS HAPPY TO SHARE THESE
NEWS AND RESOURCES FROM THE FIELD

December 20, 2005

IN THIS ISSUE:

Events:
Illinois Organic Production Conference
Farming for Profit and Stewardship Conference
Eco-Farm 2006: Savoring Connections from Seed to Table
Midwest Value Added Conference: Enhancing Profit on the Farm
NOFA-NY Organic Farming & Gardening Conference
Farming for the Future Conference
Farming with Values that Last Conference
Northeast Sustainable Livestock Conference
Community Food Security Coalition Evaluation Program Workshop

Funding Opportunities:
Illinois Renewable Energy Development Fund
Graduate Student Grant Program
Private Stewardship Grants Program
New York Farmland Protection Implementation Project Grants
Teaching and Research Capacity Building Grants Program
Small Business Innovation Research Program: Phase II
WI Agricultural Development and Diversification Grants
USDA Announces Availability of Food Stamp Outreach Grants
Pest Management Alternatives Program
Kentucky 2006 Agri-tourism Competitive Awards Program

In the News:
2007 Farm Bill Public Comment Period to Close December 30th
Swiss Approve 5-year GMO Farming Ban
Program Links Producers and Government Employees
Native Foods Find New Generation of Support
Upstate NY Grassfed Farmers Create Internship Program
Milk to Cheese Pilot Project Shut Down

Resources:
New Book from Farm Aid
Training Offered for Environmental and Conservation Campaign Organizers In
NC
Patrick Madden Award: A Search for an Exemplary Northeast Farmer
Strategies for Healthy Food, Healthy Communities
The Internet as a Farming Tool
Report Shows Growth in Organic Acreage
Factory Animal Farms and Human Health Link Explored
Two Publications from the Food Research and Action Center
Foodlinks America E-News
New Pest Management Resource from Sustainable Agriculture Network
Pastures Of Plenty Report
Report from Union of Concerned Scientists on Economics of Pharmaceutical
Crops.

Quick Links:
Job Opportunities on the National Campaign’s Website
Event Calendar on the National Campaign’s Website
ATTRA Publications for Organic Crop Producers
Cornell Resource Guide: Organic Insect & Disease Management New Book
New Book On What People Eat In A Week In Various Countries
Competitive Foods Examined
Local Planning for NY Agriculture is Focus of New Guide
Katahdin Sheep Offer Tobacco Alternative for Virginia County

HAPPY HOLIDAYS TO ALL!

*******************************************************
EVENTS

ILLINOIS ORGANIC PRODUCTION CONFERENCE
January 11-12, 2006, Bloomington, Illinois
This second annual conference provides practical, science-based information
and extensive networking opportunities for any farmer interested in learning
more about organic agriculture, whether they have organic experience or not.
URL: http://www.aces.uiuc.edu/asap/orgconf/

FARMING FOR PROFIT AND STEWARDSHIP CONFERENCE
January 13-14, 2006, Hagerstown, MD
The 7th annual conference will bring together outstanding farmers,
nationally known researchers and experienced educators in the field of
sustainable agriculture. Two new pre-conference workshops will run from 9:30
am to noon on Friday. "Value Added Products” and "Taking Research into Your
Own Hands" More info at: http://www.futureharvestcasa.org/conf.html

ECO-FARM 2006: SAVORING CONNECTIONS FROM SEED TO TABLE
January 25-28, 2006, Pacific Grove, California
Eco-Farm features prominent keynote speakers and more than 50 workshops on
the latest advances in agricultural production, marketing, research, and
important issues.
URL: http://www.eco-farm.org/efc_05/aboutefc.html

MIDWEST VALUE ADDED CONFERENCE: ENHANCING PROFIT ON THE FARM
January 27-28, 2006, Eau Claire, Wisconsin
At this annual conference, learn from those who have explored new ways of
marketing their products. URL: http://www.rivercountryrcd.org/valad.htm

NOFA-NY ORGANIC FARMING & GARDENING CONFERENCE
January 27-29, 2006, Syracuse/Liverpool, NY
Cooperation: with Nature, with Neighbors, with Local Economies. More info
here: http://nofany.org/events.html#conference06

FARMING FOR THE FUTURE CONFERENCE
February 2-4, 2006, State College, PA
The Pennsylvania Association for Sustainable Agriculture (PASA) will
celebrate the 15th anniversary of its Farming for the Future conference with
the theme "Weaving a Diverse Landscape: Food as a Common Thread." More info:
http://www.pasafarming.org/conferences/confinfo.htm

FARMING WITH VALUES THAT LAST CONFERENCE
February 24-26, 2006, Mount Pleasant, PA
The agenda includes practical workshops, inspiring singing, solid worship
and warm fellowship for people of faith interested in sustainable farming
and healthy food. A conference flier is online at
www.laurelville.org/pdfs/06 SF web.pdf

NORTHEAST SUSTAINABLE LIVESTOCK CONFERENCE
March 6-7, 2006, Fairlee, VT
This two-day conference will include topics on energy, soils, crops,
finances, grazing, animal health, and marketing. More info at:
http://www.nofavt.org/event.php?e_id=381

COMMUNITY FOOD SECURITY COAL. EVALUATION PROGRAM WORKSHOP
March 13-15, 2006, New Orleans, Louisiana
This is a comprehensive, interactive, two-and-a-half-day workshop focused on
outcome-based evaluation strategies, tools, analysis and results and
designed expressly for Community Food Project (CFP) grantees and other CFP
practitioners. http://foodsecurity.org/eval_wkshp2006.html

More Events:
http://www.sustainableagriculture.net/scripts/calendar/calendar.cgi
and http://attra.ncat.org/calendar/.

*******************************************************
FUNDING OPPORTUNITIES

ILLINOIS RENEWABLE ENERGY DEVELOPMENT FUND
The Illinois Finance Authority (IFA) will work with community banks and
lenders to provide loans and loan guarantees to qualified farmers and farmer
co-operatives who construct wind turbines for use as alternative energy.
http://www.illinois.gov/PressReleases/ShowPressRelease.cfm?SubjectID=3&RecNu
m=4446

GRADUATE STUDENT GRANT PROGRAM
North Central Region (NCR) SARE has issued a call for proposals in the
Graduate Student Grant Program. Approximately $150,000 will be available to
fund 15 to 16 grant projects, with individual grants not to exceed $10,000.
Proposals are due January 10, 2006. URL:
http://www.sare.org/ncrsare/cfp.htm

PRIVATE STEWARDSHIP GRANTS PROGRAM
The Private Stewardship Program provides grants and other assistance on a
competitive basis to individuals and groups engaged in local, private, and
voluntary conservation efforts that benefit federally listed, proposed, or
candidate species, or other at-risk species. Proposal must include at least
10 percent cost sharing on the part of the landowner or other non-Federal
partners involved in the project. Grant proposals must be submitted to
regional offices. Proposals are due January 23, 2006. URL:
http://www.fws.gov/endangered/grants/private_stewardship/index.html

NEW YORK FARMLAND PROTECTION IMPLEMENTATION PROJECT GRANTS
Proposals for funding will be accepted from only: (1) county agricultural
and farmland protection boards in counties with an approved county plan
developed pursuant to Section 324 of Article 25-AAA of the Agriculture and
Markets Law; or (2) any municipality which has in place a local farmland
protection plan, provided the proposed project is endorsed for funding by
the agricultural and farmland protection board for the county in which the
municipality is located. Local match, equal to at least 25 percent of the
total project required. Proposals are due January 23, 2006. URL:
http://www.agmkt.state.ny.us/RFPS.html

TEACHING AND RESEARCH CAPACITY BUILDING GRANTS PROGRAM
The Cooperative State Research, Education, and Extension Service requests
applications for the for fiscal year 2006 to stimulate the development of
high quality teaching and research programs at 1890 Land-Grant Institutions
and Tuskegee University and West Virginia State University to build their
capacities. Estimated total program funding is $12.4 million. Proposals
are due January 31, 2006. URL:
http://www.csrees.usda.gov/funding/rfas/1890_capacity.html

SMALL BUSINESS INNOVATION RESEARCH PROGRAM: PHASE II
The U.S. Department of Agriculture is soliciting research proposals under
the Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) Program, Fiscal Year 2006. New
this year for SBIR is a Small and Mid Sized Farms topic area. Projects
dealing with agriculturally related manufacturing technology are encouraged
across all 2006 SBIR topic areas. Estimated total program funding is $19.4
million. Proposals are due February 2, 2006.
URL: http://www.csrees.usda.gov/fo/fundview.cfm?fonum=1222

WI AGRICULTURAL DEVELOPMENT AND DIVERSIFICATION GRANTS
The Wisconsin Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection's
Agricultural Development and Diversification (ADD) Grant Program invites
proposals for projects that are likely to stimulate Wisconsin's agricultural
economy through the development and exploration of new value-added products,
new markets, or new technologies in agriculture. Currently, the program has
$380,000 to award to projects with a maximum grant amount of $50,000.
Proposals are due March 15, 2006. URL:
http://datcp.state.wi.us/mktg/business/marketing/val-add/add/index.jsp

USDA ANNOUNCES AVAILABILITY OF FOOD STAMP OUTREACH GRANTS
The purpose of these grants is to implement and study effective strategies
to inform and educate potentially eligible low income people not currently
participating in the FSP about the nutrition benefits of the Food Stamp
Program, eligibility rules, and how to apply. Optional letters of intent are
due January 6, 2006. Proposals are due April 3, 2006.
http://www.usda.gov/wps/portal/!ut/p/_s.7_0_A/7_0_1OB?contentidonly=true&con
tentid=2005/11/0512.xml

PEST MANAGEMENT ALTERNATIVES PROGRAM
Supports projects that develop and implement integrated pest management
practices, tactics and systems for specific pest problems while reducing
human and environmental risks. Proposals are due February 1, 2006. URL:
http://fedgrants.gov/Applicants/USDA/CSREES/OEP/USDA-GRANTS-120605-001/Grant
.html

KENTUCKY 2006 AGRI-TOURISM COMPETITIVE AWARDS PROGRAM
Kentucky will make available $1 million in state funds for the 2006
Agri-tourism Competitive Awards Program. All projects require a 50% match
from the applicant.
Proposals are due February 1, 2006.
URL: http://agpolicy.ky.gov/funds/award_programs_agritourism.shtml

More Funding Opportunities: http://attra.ncat.org/funding/

*******************************************************
IN THE NEWS

2007 FARM BILL PUBLIC COMMENT PERIOD TO CLOSE DECEMBER 30TH
The window of opportunity for commenting on the shape of the next federal
Farm Bill will soon be shut, at least for this part of the process. The
USDA began accepting public comments on the priorities of the next Farm Bill
last spring and has since been crisscrossing the country organizing Farm
Bill listening sessions. Those who were not able to attend a public forum
can still be part of the process by submitting their comments online here:
http://www.usda.gov/farmbill (click on “Farm Bill 2007 Official Comments” in
right sidebar)

SWISS APPROVE 5-YEAR GMO FARMING BAN
In a national referendum, Swiss voters adopted a five-year moratorium on GMO
crops and the import of genetically modified animals, reports Reuters. The
measure approved by 55 percent of voters is one of the toughest stances in
Europe on GMOs. In related news covered by EUobserver
(http://euobserver.com/9/20431), Austria has said it will launch a European
Union-wide debate on GMOs when it takes over EU's rotating presidency in
January. Austria already has a ban of its own on GMO plants.
http://today.reuters.com/news/newsArticle.aspx?type=scienceNews&storyID=2005
-11-27T135520Z_01_MOL749996_RTRUKOC_0_US-FOOD-SWISS-GMO.xml&archived=False

PROGRAM LINKS PRODUCERS AND GOVERNMENT EMPLOYEES
The National Association of Conservation Districts and the Natural Resources
Conservation Service (NRCS) are joining forces with the National Cattlemen's
Beef Association (NCBA) and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service on the "Walk
a Mile in My Boots" initiative. The program is a work-exchange program
between agriculture producers and government employees that was developed by
NCBA and FWS in 2003. Farmers and ranchers participating in exchanges will
visit field offices and/or state and national offices. URL:
http://www.nrcs.usda.gov/feature/volunteers/walkamile.html

NATIVE FOODS FIND NEW GENERATION OF SUPPORT
An article in The New York Times reports on fledgling efforts across the
nation to revive American Indian foods. Chefs nationwide are beginning to
incorporate native foods--wild rice, squash, beans, corn, Pacific salmon,
bison, and persimmons, for example--into their menus. Several projects are
encouraging a return to traditional agriculture and foodstuffs, including
the White Earth Land Recovery Project, Native Seeds/SEARCH, and Renewing
America's Food Traditions (RAFT).
http://www.nytimes.com/2005/11/23/dining/23nati.html?adxnnl=1&adxnnlx=113277
6114-HquVyavIZTDI8wVn6MiLww

UPSTATE NY GRASSFED FARMERS CREATE INTERNSHIP PROGRAM
The program, created by the members of MADE in Schoharie County, a community
coalition of pasture-based livestock farmers based in Schoharie County, aims
to train its first class of interns in every aspect of sustainable meat
production from hoof to plate. The program will run from Mid-May through
Mid-August. Students who have a high school degree and some college
experience are encouraged to apply. To learn more, visit
www.grassfedinterns.com, or by calling Carol Clement at (518) 239-6234.

MILK TO CHEESE PILOT PROJECT SHUT DOWN
On October 26, 2005, the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) abruptly
ended an 18-month experiment in which a local anti-hunger organization
exchanged government surplus nonfat dry milk for cheese to feed the needy.
The Hunger Task Force of Milwaukee (HTFM) was told to end its relationship
with Alto Dairy Cooperative in Waupun, WI, which received the powdered milk,
kept some as a form of compensation, and turned the rest into 20,000 pounds
of cheese a month that was distributed in low-income neighborhoods in
Milwaukee. USDA discontinued the project because it claimed that the cheese
giveaway decreased demand for and sales of nonfat dry milk and that surplus
stocks had been reduced. The termination of the pilot project just five
days after USDA announced that it would donate 25 million pounds of the
nonfat dry milk to food banks and others as part of a humanitarian
initiative, raised some eyebrows in Washington, D.C. “This disparity seems
incongruous and I would welcome further elaboration on this point,” Senator
Herb Kohl (D-WI) wrote USDA. “I have been an ardent supporter of [the
pilot] and our staffs have talked at length about this initiative.” From
Foodlinks America – November 25, 2005

******************************************************
RESOURCES

NEW BOOK FROM FARM AID
A Song for America (Rodale, $35.00) was released this fall and chronicles
the series of concerts and the accomplishments of the organization that
galvanized a grassroots movement for the independent family farm. The book
features in-depth interviews with Farm Aid President and Founder Willie
Nelson, as well as board members Neil Young, John Mellencamp and Dave
Matthews, who offer their reflections about food, family farming and music,
revealing the depth of their personal and family commitment. Essays by such
diverse writers as Robert F. Kennedy, Jr., Barbara Kingsolver, Eric
Schlosser, Wendell Berry, Howard Zinn, Michael Pollan, and Ruth Reichl are
interwoven with hundreds of exclusive photographs and inspiring imagery to
create a tapestry that chronicles the mission, achievements, and ongoing
challenges of Farm Aid and the family farms they help. To order:
www.farmaid.org, or call 1-800-FARM-AID.

TRAINING OFFERED FOR ENVIRONMENTAL AND CONSERVATION CAMPAIGN ORGANIZERS IN
NORTH CAROLINA
Presented by the Institute For Conservation Leadership and The North
Carolina Conservation Network. The First workshop will be held January
27-28, 2006 near Greensboro, NC. The complete organizer program includes
two workshops and ongoing support. The deadline to apply is January 9,
2006. For complete details and to download the application, visit ICL’s
website: www.icl.org. For more information, contact Nicole (Marschhauser)
Stewart at NC Conservation Network (919-857-4699 ext.105,
nicole@ncconservationnetwork.org) or Baird Straughan at ICL (301-270-2900
ext. 4 or baird@icl.org).

PATRICK MADDEN AWARD: A SEARCH FOR AN EXEMPLARY NE FARMER
The Northeast Sustainable Agriculture Research and Education (SARE) program
is seeking nominations for the Patrick Madden Award. This award recognizes a
farmer who is living the SARE mission by practicing agriculture that is
profitable, good for the environment, and beneficial to the wider community.
Offered in memory of Patrick Madden, the first national director of SARE, it
comes with a $1000 cash award and an expense-paid trip to the SARE
conference in Wisconsin in August of 2006. Nominations for the Madden Award
should consist of a brief profile of the nominee, including contact
information, a description of the nominee's farm and its operations, and a
detailed statement of why the nominee should be considered for the award.
Nominations can be sent via e-mail to nesare@uvm.edu or to NE SARE/Madden
Award, Hills Building, 105 Carrigan Dr., Burlington, VT 05405-0082. Deadline
2/1/06.

STRATEGIES FOR HEALTHY FOOD, HEALTHY COMMUNITIES
Residents in low-income neighborhoods often have limited access to healthy
foods, but programs across the country are helping to revitalize communities
and increase access to food that is both healthy and affordable. A new
PolicyLink report, Healthy Food, Healthy Communities: Improving Access and
Opportunities through Food Retailing, discusses how this issue is being
addressed, provides examples of several successful programs, and showcases
the important role state and local governments play. The report also
highlights three of the most promising strategies for bringing healthy food
to communities: developing new grocery stores, improving the selection and
quality of food in existing smaller stores, and starting and sustaining
farmers' markets. URL: http://www.policylink.org/Research/HealthyFood/

THE INTERNET AS A FARMING TOOL
The Center for Rural Development at Louisiana Tech University offers high
quality templates for community and nonprofit Web sites. These and other
resources for Web design are available to any community that wishes to use
them. Contact Elizabeth Higgins, ehiggins@latech.edu, 318-251-2919. URL:
http://www.latech.edu/tech/rural/website project/index.html

REPORT SHOWS GROWTH IN ORGANIC ACREAGE
USDA Economic Research Service has released a report that documents growth
in organic production from 1992-2003. By 2003, farmers in 49 States
dedicated 2.2 million acres of cropland and pasture to organic production
systems. The report notes that while adoption of organic farming systems
showed strong gains between 1992 and 2003 and the adoption rate remains
high, the overall adoption level is still low--only about 0.4 percent of all
U.S. cropland and 0.1 percent of all U.S. pasture was certified organic in
2003.
URL:http://www.ers.usda.gov/Data/Organic/index.htm

FACTORY ANIMAL FARMS AND HUMAN HEALTH LINK EXPLORED
A new report from the World Society for the Protection of Animals says that
growth of industrial-style animal production could lead to human health
impacts. The report recommends a halt to the expansion of factory farms, the
adoption of humane and sustainable forms of farming, and a global ban on the
use of antibiotic growth promoters and production enhancing hormones.
URL: http://www.wspa-international.org/site/index.php?page=1542

TWO PUBLICATIONS FROM THE FOOD RESEARCH AND ACTION CENTER
The “Advocate’s Guide to the School Nutrition Programs.” is a complete
reference manual on these crucial programs that benefit millions of American
children.
For more information, go to: http://www.frac.org/pdf/advguide_school.pdf.
“Obesity, Food Insecurity and the Federal Nutrition Programs: Understanding
the Linkages.” includes information on definitions, prevalence, and
consequences of these public health problems for low-income people, along
with a detailed examination of child nutrition program operations and their
impacts. To learn more, see: http://www.frac.org/pdf/obesity05_paper.pdf.
From Foodlinks America – Nov. 25, 2005

FOODLINKS AMERICA E-NEWS
This resource is available free of charge to non-profit, public, and
faith-based organizations. The biweekly newsletter is dedicated to
providing you with useful information on food, nutrition, and hunger
concerns in the United States. To receive the newsletter send a request to:
bvauthier@281.com.

NEW PEST MANAGEMENT RESOURCE
The Sustainable Agriculture Network has released a new pest management
resource that is available for free online. Download a complete copy of
"Manage Insects on Your Farm" at www.sare.org/publications/insect.htm. To
order print copies ($15.95 plus $5.95 s/h) visit www.sare.org/WebStore, call
301/374-9696 or send check or money order to Sustainable Agriculture
Publications, PO Box 753, Waldorf, Maryland 20604-0753. (Please specify
title requested when ordering by mail.) Discounts are available on orders of
10 or more. Allow 3-4 weeks for delivery.

PASTURES OF PLENTY REPORT
Farms using managed grazing typically produce less milk per cow than
confinement farms. However, a series of economic studies in Wisconsin and
elsewhere show that, for many dairy farmers, the savings they realize using
managed grazing more than offsets the loss in milk revenues due to lower
production. These studies show that grazing farms are economically
competitive with confinement operations. The report from UW-Madison Center
for Integrated Agricultural Systems details some of the principal findings
of this economic research.
http://www.cias.wisc.edu/archives/2005/02/01/pastures_of_plenty_financial_pe
rformance_of_wisconsin_grazing_dairy_farms/index.php

REPORT FROM UNION OF CONCERNED SCIENTISTS ON ECONOMICS OF PHARMACEUTICAL
CROPS.
The economics of pharmaceutical crops: potential benefits and risks for
Farmers and rural communities finds that while some drug and
Biotechnology companies may profit from pharma crops, growers and rural
Communities are likely to see, at best, only modest benefits. The report is
available at
http://www.ucsusa.org/food_and_environment/genetic_engineering/economics-of-
pharmaceutical-crops.html
*******************************************************

QUICK LINKS
Job Opportunities on the National Campaign’s Website:
https://www.wustainableagriculture.net/employment.php

Event Calendar on the National Campaign’s Website:
http://www.sustainableagriculture.net/scripts/calendar/calendar.cgi

ATTRA Publications for Organic Crop Producers:
Available at http://attra.ncat.org/risk_management/srmgateway.html)
many more publications on all aspects of sustainable agriculture, are
available for free from ATTRA at 800-346-9140 or http://www.attra.ncat.org.
Cornell Resource Guide: Organic Insect & Disease Management
Order on-line at www.cce.cornell.edu/store.

New Book On What People Eat In A Week In Various Countries:
http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=5005952

Competitive Foods Examined
The report from the General Accounting Office, the investigative arm of
Congress, also noted that competitive food sales (those that compete with
nutritious school lunch items) “generated substantial revenues” for
schools. http://www.gao.gov/new.items/d05563.pdf.

Local Planning For NY Agriculture is Focus of New Guide
American Farmland Trust's new Guide to Local Planning for Agriculture in New
York
URL:http://www.farmlandinfo.org/farmland_preservation_literature/index.cfm?f
unction=article_view&articleID=30379

Katahdin Sheep Offer Tobacco Alternative For Virginia County
In Scott County, Virginia, a significant number of tobacco farmers looking
for an alternative crop have turned to raising Katahdin hair sheep for their
meat. http://www.timesnews.net/businessArticle.dna?_StoryID=3572692

HAPPY HOLIDAYS TO ALL!

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Sheilah Davidson
Administrative Director
National Campaign For Sustainable Agriculture
P.O. Box 396
Pine Bush, New York 12566
Phone: 845-361-5201 Fax: 845-361-5204
e-mail: sheilah@sustainableagriculture.net
http://www.sustainableagriculture.net/