WEBINAR: Contracting in Agriculture: What Do Advocates and Farmers Need to Know?

In March we wrote about the new resource from USDA Contracting in Agriculture: Making the Right Decision, Information for Farmers from USDA.
http://sustainableagriculture.net/wp-content/uploads/2017/03/2016-Drake-FSA-NSAC-Production-Contracts-Guide.pdf

As a follow up to the guide, the Drake University Agricultural Law Center and National Sustainable Agriculture Coalition are co-hosting a webinar on contract agreements. The webinar is open to everyone, and advanced registration is recommended, but not required.

Here are the webinar details:

When: Wednesday, May 31, 2:00 PM – 3:30 PM EST

Who: Anyone that is interested in contract agriculture

What:  Today, a significant portion of livestock, poultry and other crops are being raised under production contracts. But production contracts can be complicated & confusing. How will a contract affect the future of your farm?

This webinar will help farmers, advocates, and law students understand production and marketing contracts for contract growing: the benefits, the risks, and the legal considerations.

Neil Hamilton of Drake Law School will be the presenter.

Photo © Patty O’Brien | www.summercrowphotos.com

How: Webinar Registration

 

 

Save the Date for the 2017 AgrAbility National Training Workshop!

AgrAbility is an organization that works to enhance the quality of life for farmers and ranchers with disabilities. They work on helping farmers find gainful employment in production agriculture, gain access to appropriate assistive technology needed for work and daily living activities, and more.

Join them for the 2017 AgrAbility National Training Workshop from March 20-23 in Knoxville, TN. This event is the premier training event addressing issues of disability in agriculture. It brings together professionals and consumers from all over the country to participate in educational sessions, breakout groups, tours, and networking events.  For more information, visit the event website

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2016 Farmer Veteran Stakeholders Conference

Hosted by Farmer Veteran Coalition, the Farmer Veteran Stakeholders Conference will take place November 30 – December 2 in East Lansing, MI.

The conference will bring together farmer veterans, as well as the organizations that support them- from government agencies to nonprofit groups.  Participants can attend workshops on all aspects of farming, as well as visit other farms in the area.

Here are the details:

  • WHEN: November 30 – December 2
  • WHERE: Kellogg Hotel and Conference Center at Michigan State University ( 219 South Harrison Rd. East Lansing, MI)
  • COSTS: Full sessions – $400; Thursday session including hosted dinner: $200; Exhibit Booth Space: $1,000

For a full agenda for the conference, visit the conference web page.

New Resource: A Young Farmers Guide to Election Season from National Young Farmers Coalition

Our friends at National Young Farmers Coalition recently wrote a guide for young farmers on engaging with political candidates this election season. They provide five specific ideas for how to engage, including:

  1. Attend a town hall or candidate forum.
  2. Ask a question at a local debate.
  3. Get a group of local farmers together to request an on-farm meeting with the candidate.
  4. Engage the candidates on social media.
  5. Bring your friends into the conversation.

Read details on how to engage in those actions here: http://www.youngfarmers.org/a-young-farmers-guide-to-election-season/

The 2013 New Farmer’s Almanac from The Greenhorns

The Greenhorns have released The 2013 New Farmer’s Almanac, full of “advice and entertainment for those dealing practically with the unknown.” Written for new and young farmers working to build a more sustainable food system, the almanac includes more than 300 pages of essays by young agrarians, useful illustrations, historical excerpts, lunar information, poems, and more. An ‘audio almanac’ of worksongs, farm lectures, interviews and other content accompanies the hard copy.

Order The 2013 New Farmer’s Almanac using Etsy, Paypal, or by sending a check or money order. The almanac will also be available at farmer conferences, feed stores, and independent bookshops. For information about bulk ordering, email audrey@thegreenhorns.net.

The Greenhorns’ mission is to promote, recruit and support the growing movement of new and sustainable farmers in the country. Learn more at www.thegreenhorns.net.

Text an ATTRA Ag Expert!

Catering to the increased use of smartphones and the convenience of texting, ATTRA is expanding its “Ask an Ag Expert” email service, which offers farmers free advice about sustainable agriculture practices and resources. Now farmers can reach a professional at any time of day, whether at a computer or out in the fields! Earlier this year, ATTRA also launched a mobile version of their website that makes it much more smartphone and tablet-friendly.

To reach an ATTRA expert, send a text to askanag@ncat.org and a staff member will respond directly to your phone.

“Field Journal: A Beginners Guide for Young Farmers,” Available for Free Download

The Northeast Beginning Farmer Project and The Greenhorns have released the beautifully illustrated, full-color Field Journal: A Beginners Guide for Young Farmers for free download. The guide details the history and future of American agriculture, information on learning to farm, starting a farm, going to market, and a multitude of resources from funding opportunities to land access to business education for aspiring farmers.

Field Journal is both a basic primer for the future farmer and detailed guide for the serious grower. Woven throughout the pragmatic resources and information are “Stories from the Field,” first-hand accounts and advice from young farmers across the country and a section for your own notes, inspiration, ideas and planning.

Download your copy and visit The Greenhorns and The Northeast Beginning Farmer Project for more resources.

Free Webinar: “Understanding Whole-Farm Insurance for Specialized, Diversified, and Organic Farms,” Presented by NCAT

The National Center for Appropriate Technology (NCAT) will present a free, hour-long webinar on Thursday, November 29th at 1 pm EST, providing guidance for farmers and other professionals on the Adjusted Gross Revenue Lite (AGR-Lite) crop insurance program and its potential to serve small-scale, diverse, specialty crop, organic and direct-market farmers.

AGR-Lite is a unique type of federally subsidized crop insurance that is based on whole-farm revenue, rather than a specific crop or commodity. With AGR-Lite, farmers of diverse operations, specialty and high-value or organic crops and livestock can insure based on their farm’s historic revenue.

The webinar will also introduce NCAT’s new AGR-Lite Wizard assessment tool, which assists farmers in determining how whole-farm insurance can benefit their operation. The tool is available at www.agrlitewizard.com or by calling 1-800-346-9140.

Organic Farming Research Foundation Accepting Grant Proposals

Organic Farming Research Foundation (OFRF), in partnership with Seed Matters, is now accepting grant proposals for research or education and outreach projects in organic seed quality or crop breeding innovation through November 19, 2012.

OFRF will consider funding for research projects in topics, including, but not limited to:

  • Systems approaches to managing seed-borne diseases;
  • Developing seed treatments compliant with the organic standards;
  • Participatory plant breeding activities;
  • Developing strategies for maintaining integrity of organic seed.

Education and outreach proposals will be accepted for the development of interactive educational materials, activities and media for:

  • Effective seed treatments allowable under the organic standards;
  • Maintaining seed quality during processing and handling;
  • Small-scale seed harvesting, drying, and processing methods;
  • On-farm or participatory breeding and selection methods.

Grant applicants in Canada, Mexico and the United States are eligible for funding up to $15,000.00. Proposals may be submitted online, and funding decisions will be made in March 2013. For guidance in writing and submitting your proposal, contact OFRF at grants@ofrf.org, or (831) 426-6606.