Michigan Organic News Listserv March 10, 2012
Brought to you by MSU Organic Outreach Specialist
C.S. Mott Group for Sustainable Food Systems-Vicki Morrone
Here is shared news for and from all, no product or commercial business is endorsed by MSU
I hope by now all farmers have their cover crop seed frost seeded. This is the perfect job to get done before spring, providing ground cover to hold the soil and feed the microbes while you wait in the spring for the ground to dry, prior to planting.
MSU information related to organic production
Michigan Organic Reporting Session promotes organic research and innovation in Michigan
Seventy plus farmers, students, educators and researchers gathered for a day to engage in the Michigan Organic Reporting Session in East Lansing, Michigan at Michigan State University to exchange research results and experiences on a wide range of production topics in organic systems. The event is held each year on the first day of MSU ANR week. It offers farmers, educators, students and researchers with the change to hear about new research on organic agriculture and for graduate students to share their research too.
Sponsorship by MOFFA provided MSU’s graduate students an added incentive to present their research in the format of posters for all to visit and discuss during a social reception. All fourteen posters that were displayed were phenomenal, sharing practical aspects of research and showing us results in smartly presented formats. The presentations ranged in scope from building the soil and managing weeds with cover crops and reduce pests in organic cropping systems. The top three posters were awarded to Zachary D. Hayden, Brad Baughman and Dan Kane. Zachary D. Hayden, Mathieu Ngouajio, and Daniel C. Brainard presented “Rye-vetch proportion and plastic mulch affect cover crop biomass production, soil nitrate, and bell pepper yield” taking first place. Brad Baughman, Ron Perry, Matt Grieshop presented “Implementation of Strip Cultivation in Michigan Apple Orchards: An Organic Alternative to Herbicide Strips” and was awarded second place. Daniel Kane and Sieg Snapp presented “Managing Nitrogen in Organic Systems with Zonal Tillage: Proposed Research taking third place”. “All posters are winners!” exclaimed Morrone, the coordinator of the event. She noted how much the posters have improved over the years, as they learn from each other’s experiences as well as guidance from the judges. Over lunch farmers shared their topic-of-choice at a round-table discussion, which they received a scholarship for the day, supported by MSU’s College of Agriculture and Natural Resources. MSUE and AgBioResearch and C.S. Mott Group at MSU.
Michigan State University professors and staff presented on their research conducting in Michigan on certified organic field research stations and on farms. To kick off the dayRoger Blobaum from Ceres Trust shared how the grant awarding program is working to engage more research by professors and graduate students in organic production research. MSU received 33% of their funding in the past year and is doing great work with the support. The practical side of the research was the focus the reports, giving farmers tested ideas to take home to their farms.Practical knowledge included topics ranging from soil health, pest management, and a marketing prospective of organic crops in the U.S.. Some highlight topics of the day included promising research results using compost tea to mange powdery mildew and biofumigant cover crops to reduce soil-borne pathogens. We also learned how beneficial insects can be used to reduce insects in our fields and how soil health impacts organic crops. To cap off the research discussions, a farmers panel shared their experiences and observations of how they “Manage Mother Natures curve balls”, which was supported by NC SARE-Michigan program. Farmers shared their approaches how they try to mange in a changing climate, given that the Great Lakes already create unusual weather patterns and now combined with the impact of Global Climate Change. All farmers on the panelconcurred that you just have to keep managing and adjusting to meet the crops needs and try to reduce the negative impacts caused by unpredicted weather.There is not specific solution as things keep changing! In a conclusive remark, Rod Kieger, organic field crop farmer in Elsie and St. Johns, noted that on-farm research such as what MSU is doing is particularly helpful to identify potential solutions.
To see the posters and presentations visit www.MichiganOrganic.msu.edu after March 14
MSU seeks new Dean of College of Ag and Natural Resources
***Please come and share your thoughts of what MSU needs to do to keep Michigan's agriculture an important part of our state-help us choose the best Dean of College
of Ag and Natural Resources possible!!
***Please come and share your thoughts of what MSU needs to do to keep Michigan's agriculture an important part of our state-help us choose the best Dean of College of Ag and Natural Resources possible!!
I know this time is getting busy, especially for our fruit and vegetable producers but you are a stakeholder for MSU, especially in the College of Ag and Natural Resources. If you can attend any or all of the seminars where the Dean Candidates present their work and story please come.
Below is a list of the times and places. There are 4 candidates seeking the position. Please note that the first and last two are being held in the Kellogg Conference Center and the second one is being held at the Plant and Soil Science Building, which is near the MSU Children’sGarden,. All of these are on MSU’s campus in East Lansing and there is public parking next to both buildings. You do not need to register, just attend.
Hope to see some of you to speak out of your needs as an organic farmer or community organizer or whatever your capacity is around organic agriculture serving Michigan’s agriculture industry and people.
The CANR Dean Search Committee is pleased to announce that four finalists have been selected for campus interviews and will be visiting campus beginning March 12: Dr. Steven D. Hanson Asst. Dean of International Studies and Programs, and Chair of the Department of Agricultural, Food, and Resource Economics, Michigan State University Dr. John P. Hayes Interim Dean for Research and Director of the Florida Experiment Station, University of Florida Dr. Gary M. Pierzynski Interim Dean of the College of Agriculture and Director of Research and Extension, Kansas State University Dr. Chandra Reddy Dean and Director of Research/Extension, College of Agriculture, Human, and Natural Sciences, Tennessee State University Each candidate will visit campus for 2 days beginning March 12, meeting with key faculty, staff, and administrators as well as external stakeholders, and providing, in a publicpresentation, their vision for transporting CANR forward. Short CVs of each candidate are posted on the CANR Dean Search web site: http://canr.msu.edu/canr/canr_dean_search. Feedback on each candidate will be solicited via forms provided at the public presentations as well as on-line. Public presentations are scheduled for the following times. At least an hour of each presentation will be available for Q&A. They will be webcast and recorded for those unable to attend in person. ·
1. Monday, March 12, 2-3:30 p.m., Kellogg Center Auditorium: Dr. Steven Hanson
2. Wednesday, March 14, 2-3:30 p.m., Plant and Soil Sciences Building Auditorium: Dr. John Hayes ·
3. Monday, March 19, 2-3:30 p.m., Kellogg Center Auditorium: Dr. Gary Pierzynski
4. Thursday, March 22, 2-3:30 p.m., Kellogg Center Auditorium, Dr. Chandra Reddy
We look forward to showing our finalists the vibrancy of MSU in general and of CANR in particular, and hearing about their ideas and vision for moving the College forward. Please plan to participate in these interviews to the fullest extent possible, and to then convey your viewpoints to the search committee – a crucial part of the search process. Thanks as always for your help with this important process, and please let me know of concerns or questions. Phil Robertson Chair, CANR Dean Search Committee <[log in to unmask]>
Seeking Corn Farmers to contribute to survey (15 min max)
Dear colleague: Weather patterns across the Corn Belt have had significant impacts on Michigan agriculture in recent years. You have been selected to take part in this important survey of agricultural professionals in selected Corn Belt states. We are interested in learning how you interact with members of the agricultural community and how weather and climate information factors into the advice you provide to corn farmers in Michigan. Results from this survey will be used to develop better tools, and strategies to help Corn Belt farmers adapt to weather variability and maintain and improve productivity and profitability. This survey is being conducted on behalf of a team of scientists and Extension staff from Land Grant and other universities in 9 Corn Belt states. You are receiving this as part of the University of Michigan and Michigan State University’s role in this research project. Given the important role Michigan plays in U.S. corn production, it is especially important that we receive your response even if you do not interact directly with farmers. Completing the survey will take 12-15 minutes and you can skip any questions that you do not wish to answer. We ask that the person to whom this survey is addressed complete the survey. Your individual responses will be kept confidential and your participation is entirely voluntary. We would greatly appreciate you taking the time to complete this survey. If you have any questions, please contact us.
Please click on the link to take the survey: Take the Survey
Or copy and paste the URL below into your internet browser: http://umichsnre.qualtrics.com/WRQualtricsSurveyEngine/?Q_SS=eCIs6vOr49D0PKQ_8cBvUli1V27m5M0&_=1
Thank you for your assistance! Jeffrey A. Andresen, Ph.D. Associate Professor and State Climatologist for Michigan Department of Geography Michigan State University East Lansing, MI 48824 USA
High Tunnel onlinetutorial
Hello, Friends, Colleagues and Coworkers. Just a quick note here to draw your attention to a new publication that may interest you or people you know or work with. The tutorial file available at this link (http://hcs.osu.edu/vpslab/sites/drupal-hcs-vpslab.web/files/mid-tunnel-prep-install-tutorial-final.pdf) describes one way to prepare and install gothic-framed “mid-sized” tunnels measuring 4 ft in width and 45 inches at peak height. We have found these mid-size tunnels to be useful in various ways, including as a complement toregular low and high tunnels and in over-wintering low-statured crops. Perhaps the tutorial file and mid-tunnels can be useful to you or others. Please contact me if you would like additional information. Best regards, Matt Matt Kleinhenz The OSU-OARDC the Wooster, OH
Electric fences options and considerations
Shared by Beef Daily online
Managing animals, either to keep them out or in is always a challenge, especially in a state full of deer and rabbit. Here are some options when it comes to electric fences. Some alternatives to electric fences to keep out predators such as coyotes are using guard animals such as Jenny donkies and llamas or even large dogs such as Great Pyrenes, Komodndors, Anatolian Shebherds and Akbash Dogs.
Parmak Introduces New 2012 Fence Chargers
• Grandin Livestock Systems
• Gripple Wire Fence Solutions
• Flexible Post
• Powder River Fencing
• Post Driver
• Thomas Wire Rope
• Electric Fence Energizers & Accessories
• Twin Mountain Fence
• Worksaver, Inc.
Applications for NRCS Organic Initiative Due March 30
EAST LANSING, March 6, 2012 – The USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service reminds potential applicants to contact their local NRCS office soon to find out if they are eligible for the agency’s Organic Initiative. Applications for the second ranking period of 2012 are due at NRCS offices by close of business on March 30, 2012
Nationwide, NRCS has nearly $50 million in financial and technical assistance available to certified organic producers, those who want to make the transition to organic production and producers who sell less than $5,000 in organic products annually.
Part of the Environmental Quality Incentives Program, the Organic Initiative offers a wide array of conservation practices specifically designed for organic production. The top five Organic Initiative conservation practices are cover crops, nutrient and pest management, seasonal high tunnels, crop rotation, and fencing.
Changes for the 2012 signups include three ranking periods for current and transitioning producers; a threshold ranking score that can speed up approval for qualified applicants; required conservation practices that promote the consistent use of those practices; and an expanded list of conservation activity plans.
Learn more about the Organic Initiative at http://go.usa.gov/Uo9 . For a list of Michigan NRCS offices go to http://www.mi.nrcs.usda.gov/contact/Field%20Offices.html.
Public Affairs Specialist
USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service
3001 Coolidge Road, Suite 250
East Lansing, MI 48823
Phone (517) 324-5244
Dairy Herd Management
The USDA Office of Inspector General, which issued a report this week citing a number of steps that can be taken by the National Organic Program (NOP).
Eastern Market Detroit, seeks vendors
Over the past four years, Shed 2 has become a destination for market shoppers looking for locally produced artisanal products and tasty food items to enjoy on the spot. The list of vendors interested in being included in this part of the Market has grown. A stall at Eastern Market offers vendors more than just an opportunity to sell their product -- Many new products and growing entrepreneurs have tested out and refined their concepts by hearing direct feedback from customers.
There are a few of changes for this year:
1. All applications (from both new and existing vendors) are due no later than March 23, 2012. From this pool of applications, EMC will select the vendors for the specialty area. Selection for the 2012-13 specialty vendors is dependent on many factors. Please know that existing vendors are not necessarily guaranteed a space. Every vendor must apply each year.
Factors used by Eastern Market selection committee:
Are you an existing EM specialty vendor
How long you have been a specialty vendor at EM
Quality of product
Quality of display
Quality of product packaging
2. New this year, all vendors that are selected will be required to sign a specialty vendor lease (details below) Of the 36 stalls in the specialty area, 24 will be reserved specialty vendors and 8 will be reserved for prepared foods. There will also be a handful of stalls available, with the specialty lease option, for protein vendors in the east wing of Shed 3.
3. While the majority of the space will be reserved for those with leases, a limited number of day stall spaces (4) will be available for existing, new/trial vendors and limited season vendors. Please note that the number of weeks that a vendor can occupy these stalls will be limited. The day stall fee for 2012 for specialty vendors will be $80.
SPECIALTY VENDOR LEASE
Period: April 1-November 30 (35 Weeks)
· 50% due no later than May 1 and 50% due no later than June 1
As a reminder, the specialty vendor lease includes the following benefits:
· Savings of $300
· It is the only way to guarantee a spot
· Priority list for available Holiday Market spots (December)
· Priority list for Winter Market spots (January – March)
Vendor Lease Period
If you are interested in applying please visit our website at www.detroiteasternmarket.com or click on this tiny URL www.goo.gl/Cze7y and download the new 2012-13 Vendor Handbook and the 2012-13 Vendor Application. Please remember, that applications (from both new and existing vendors) are due to the Market office no later than 4pm on March 22, 2012.
James C. Sutherland Randall Fogelman
Market Operations Business Development
Vice President of Business Development
EASTERN MARKET CORPORATION
2934 Russell Street │Detroit MI 48207
Tel 313.833.9300 ext. 106
please visit www.detroiteasternmarket.com
Agriculture Supporting Communities Internship Positions
At the Rodale Institute
We are now accepting applications for five Internship Positions in our new
Agriculture Supporting Communities (ASC) Program for the 2012 growing season.
ASC is a unique twist on a traditional CSA that makes fresh, organicproduce
accessible and affordable to just about anyone.
Participants will be trained and involved in every aspect of setting up,
producing, and running a small local organic grower’s business. This includes
hands-on training in seed starting, greenhouse production & seasonal
extensions, transplanting, pest & weed management, soil health, urban growing
techniques, harvesting, processing, marketing, customer relations, and working
with community partners. In addition to an Organic Grower’s Guide, interns
will receive written resources and training in Business Planning andNutrition
Interns will graduate from the 8-month program armed with the knowledge and
confidence to start their own ASC business in their own communities.They will
receive a Certification from the Rodale Institute as well as continued support
beyond their term at the Institute.
Applicants should have some gardening experience and be able to lift up to 40
lbs. Interns will receive housing, a seasonal produce share, and a food
stipend in exchange for 40 hours per week. Individuals from urban areas are
encouraged to apply (i.e. Philadelphia, Boston, Washington D.C., Baltimore,
New York, etc)
Please send resume and cover letter to Cynthia James, Food Production
Rodale Institute is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit founded in 1947 by organicpioneer
J.I. Rodale to study the link between healthy soil, healthy food andhealthy
people. Since then, the Rodale Institute has been dedicated to pioneering
organic farming through research, education and outreach. For over sixty
years, we’ve been researching the best practices of organic agriculture and
sharing our findings with farmers and scientists throughout the world,
advocating for policies that support farmers, and educating consumers about
how going organic is the healthiest option for people and the planet.
* All posting must include specific location(s) in the Subject line.
Farm Education Internships in Media PA
Greener Partners is seeking Farm Education Interns for the 2012 summer season
Seeking for our two farm sites in Southeastern Pennsylvania. GreenerPartners (www.greenerpartners.org<http://www.greenerpartners.org>) is a non-profit organization dedicated to building community through sustainablefarming projects and farm-based education. It is our mission to inspire individuals and communities to support and eat locally grown, seasonal food. Greener Partners operates several community farms that serve as resources for local food and food-based education.
Our three open internships include:
Farm Education Summer Internship at Hillside Farm
Location: Media, PA
Time commitment: June 13-August 14, 2012; 32 hours/week
Farm Education Summer Internship at Longview Center for Agriculture
Location: Collegeville, PA
Time commitment: June 27-August 1, 2012; 22 hours/week
Education Garden Internship at Longview Center for Agriculture
Location: Collegeville, PA
Time commitment: Mid-May to mid-August, 20-40 hours/week
See attached internship descriptions for details and info on how to apply.
Farm Educator - Media & Chester
2012 FoodCorps applications are open
We are ready for the next class of school food changemakers! FoodCorps is looking for people to serve in Michigan who are passionate about the mitten state and who are committed to improving food landscapes across the state. See attachment for more information on how to become a FoodCorps member, or go towww.foodcorps.org. In this current service year in Michigan.
C.S. Mott Group for Sustainable Food Systems at MSU
517.432.4525 (office) 313.695.7746 (cell)