Organic Dairy and Field Crop Conference from NOFA-NY

NOFA-NY has announced their 2nd Annual Organic Dairy and Field Crop Conference will take place on Friday, March 1st in Auburn, NY. The conference will consist of business, dairy, and field crop workshop tracks, including a half-day intensive workshop on the “Transition to Organic Dairy Management.” A pre-conference field day on February 28th at Cornell University in Ithaca, NY, will focus on “Cereal Grains Seed Production and NYS Certified Foundation Seed Program.”

Register by February 15th for a $5 discount. Visit www.nofany.org/dairyconference for more information about the conference, including specific workshops and speakers.

Looking to Improve Animal Welfare on Your Farm? Apply for Fund-a-Farmer Grants!

The application period is open for the Food Animal Concerns Trust (FACT) Fund-a-Farmer Project: a micro-grants initiative that assists farmers in improving animal welfare. The Fund-a-Farmer Project grants up to $1,500 for projects that (1) help farms transition to pasture-based systems, (2) improve the marketing of their humane products, or (3) more generally enrich the conditions in which farm animals are raised. Last year, FACT awarded $13,000 to nine farms across the country.

Working, independent family farmers who raise pigs, broiler chickens, laying hens, dairy cows and/or beef cattle are eligible to apply for any of the grants. Projects involving goats and sheep are only eligible for marketing grants. Apply online at www.fundafarmer.org. Applications are due by May 1, 2013, and grants will be awarded in August 2013.

New England Workshop on Cost-Reducing Strategies for Dairy and Livestock

Cooperative Extension faculty and educators from northern New England are offering a workshop on January 17, 2013 in South Deerfield, MA, for dairy and livestock operations. Interactive presentations and discussions will give producers strategies for maximizing the impact of every dollar invested in their operations, including the following topics:

  • Reducing shrink on your farm
  • Alternative nutrient sources and nutrient management
  • Beating high feed costs
  • Maximizing forage quality
  • High forage dairy diets
  • Selecting profitable corn hybrids
  • Modern vaccination program
  • Other locally relevant topics

Register and find more information at: http://extension.umass.edu/cdle/events/cost-reducing-strategies-livestock-and-dairy-operations. Contact Mallory Ottariano with any questions: 413.545.5221 or mottaria@psis.umass.edu.