We're creating opportunities to involve more of our community in the work we're doing. If you're passionate and knowledgeable about organic and sustainable farming practices and want to be part of the MOSES team, let us know! These paid opportunities include presentations on farming topics, writing about your area of expertise, and answering questions from other farmers. Work can range from 10 to 20 hours/month. Interested? Send your resume and letter of introduction by Oct. 10, 2017. Questions? Call John at 715-778-5775.
Organic Transition Workshop
Commercial-scale farmers can learn about organic systems and how to access the premium organic market at a workshop hosted by MOSES Wednesday, Nov. 8, 2017, in St. Louis following the Organic & Non-GMO Forum (see brief below). Tickets are $100 in advance, $150 onsite. Registration and details are online
MOSES is sponsoring a field day in Wisconsin on Oct. 9 hosted by the Iowa County Farmer-Led Watershed Group and Michael Fields Agricultural Institute. This free event tours a market farm, grain farm, and dairy to show how cover crops build soil fertility at each farm. The tour ends with a seafood lunch with fish caught by Gulf Coast fisheries to illustrate the connection between Wisconsin farm practices and water quality in the Gulf of Mexico. Register online or call 608-238-1440.
Master the money side of farming through this one-day workshop based on the book Fearless Farm Finances, published by MOSES. Two of the book's authors, Dr. Craig Chase and Paul Dietmann, will teach this workshop on basic farm financial management. Dates are Nov. 10, 2017 in Montour, Iowa, and Dec. 8, 2017 in Streator, Illinois. Workshop cost is $50 and includes a copy of Fearless Farm Finances. Seats are limited. Register online or call 715-778-5775.
MOSES will present a one-day workshop on everything you need to know to meet the new rules laid out in the Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA), especially the Produce Safety and Preventive Controls for Human Food rules. Workshops are Nov. 10 in Montour, Iowa, and Dec. 8 in Streator, Illinois. Cost to attend is $50. Seats are limited. Register online or call 715-778-5775.
Beginning farmers can boost their farming skills through New Farmer U, a weekend conference Nov. 10-12 in Montour, Iowa, and Dec. 8-10 in Streator, Illinois, presented by MOSES and Renewing the Countryside, with local partners. The training includes 90-minute workshops on farming topics, a panel presentation with experienced farmers, plus resource tables with services to help beginning farmers. Cost for the training, lodging, and meals is just $125, with a $25 discount for farm partners. Registration deadline is Oct. 25, 2017.
|Online Course on Farm Finances|
Gain control of your farm's finances by taking a 16-week online course based on the book Fearless Farm Finances. The course is offered by MOSES and Northeast Wisconsin Technical College. You'll be part of a cohort of students focused on the same topic each week, even as you work at your own pace. Non-credit course is $150, with a $50 reimbursement upon course completion. You may also take the course for college credit. Course runs Oct. 23, 2017--Feb. 25, 2018. Registration closes Oct. 17, 2017.
Save the date: the MOSES Organic Farming Conference
returns to La Crosse, Wis. Feb. 22-24, 2018. Registration opens Nov. 30 for this high-energy launch to your 2018 farming season. Innovative farmers, experienced educators, and farming professionals will present 66 workshops offering practical information about field crops, soil health, livestock, dairy, vegetables, and specialty crops, plus strategies to help you manage and grow your business. Look for details online
in the coming weeks and in your mailbox in late November.
Call for Research Posters
The Organic Research Forum
at the 2018 MOSES Conference includes a poster session documenting completed and ongoing research projects related to organic agriculture. Researchers, academic faculty and staff, graduate/undergraduate students, and farmer researchers may submit a poster proposal for consideration by Dec. 15, 2017. Space is limited to 25 posters. All accepted poster presenters receive full conference admission.
Want an experienced farmer to guide your fledgling farm? Want to share your experience with
a beginning farmer and encourage sustainable, organic production? Apply now to participate in
2017 to February 2019--a bit more than one year. It includes admission to the MOSES Organic
Farming Conference in both 2018 and 2019. The application deadline is Oct. 31, 2017.
The Organic & Non-GMO Forum: Oilseeds & Grains at the Crossroads
is Nov. 6-7, 2017 in St. Louis. Sessions cover the latest information regarding opportunities for producers while addressing processors' production needs. Tickets are $799. Producers with 5,000 or more acres, use "MOSES" to register for $650; smaller-scale farmers, use code "ORGFARMER" to register at $499.
|Certified Organic Survey Results|
The number of certified organic farms in the country now totals 14,217, according to results of the USDA-NASS 2016 Certified Organic Survey
; this is an 11% increase over 2015. The survey showed a 15% increase in the number of certified acres, with a total of 5 million. Three states had more than 1,000 certified organic farms: California (2,713), Wisconsin (1,276), and New York (1,059). In 2016, U.S. farms produced and sold $7.6 billion in certified organic commodities.
|National Organic Program Leadership Change|
Miles McEvoy, Deputy Administrator for the National Organic Program at the USDA, stepped down last month
after eight years in the position. McEvoy said he believes organic integrity has strengthened over the past decade, and during his term standards have improved, despite continuing challenges. AMS acting Administrator Bruce Summers and acting Deputy Administrator Jenny Tucker will oversee the program until Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue selects McEvoy's replacement.
Regenerative Organic Certification
Rodale Institute has introduced a new Regenerative Organic Certification
, a cooperative effort among a coalition of farmers, ranchers, nonprofits, scientists, and brands to establish a new, high-bar standard for regenerative organic agriculture. The standard, administered by NSF International, encompasses guidelines for soil health and land management, animal welfare, and farmer and worker fairness. You may submit comments to NSF by Oct. 12, 2017.
|Specialty Crop Growers Survey|
The nonprofit National Center for Appropriate Technology is surveying U.S. specialty crop growers to see why they do or don't have crop insurance. NCAT offers growers $20 to take the confidential 20-minute survey.
|Grants for Livestock & Poultry Farmers|
Food Animal Concerns Trust (FACT) just opened the application period for grants to help livestock and poultry farmers
obtain humane certification or expand their animals' access to pasture. Up to $2,500 is available for projects that improve farm animal welfare, such as building hoop houses, constructing fences, or laying water lines on pasture. Family farmers with at least one year of experience may be eligible. On Nov. 1, FACT hosts a webinar
to explain the grant program. Grant applications are due by Dec. 4, 2017.
Row crop farmers in Minnesota, Iowa, or Wisconsin can enroll in a cost-share program through Practical Farmers of Iowa. The program is intended to support conventional farmers or those transitioning to organic who add a year of crops like barley, oats, rye, triticale or wheat followed by a summer cover crop. Certified organic acres or those under CSP or EQIP are not eligible.
A new study
by Northeastern University and The Organic Center shows soil on organic farms supports larger amounts of soil organic matter (SOM) and carbon for longer periods of time than conventionally farmed soils. The research also demonstrated that organic soil has 44% higher levels of humic acids than conventional soil. Humic acids act as a natural fertilizer, and capture carbon from the air and store it long-term.
The study, which included over a thousand soil samples from across the nation, was one of the largest studies of its kind ever conducted.
This week's "In Her Boots" podcast
features Jane Hawley Stevens of Four Elements Organic Herbals, an organic pioneer who grows and markets medicinal herbs and teas. Upcoming podcasts will feature podcast host, Lisa Kivirist, coordinator of the MOSES Rural Women's Project, talking about her Soil Sisters group of women farmers and the power of networks. You can listen to the published podcasts at any time online. Subscribe through iTunes or Stitcher to be notified when the next "In Her Boots" podcast posts.
Women, Food & Agriculture Network Conference
The Women, Food & Agriculture Network (WFAN) Conference
takes place in Madison Nov. 2-4, 2017. The workshop line-up includes "Funding Your Farm: Resources and Connections For Women Farmers" with Lisa Kivirist, MOSES Rural Women's Project, and Jan Joannides of Renewing the Countryside. Pre-conference field trips Nov. 2 include a farm tour led by MOSES board member, Dela Ends, Kivirist, and a team of farmers from the Soil Sisters network in southern Wisconsin.
The MOSES website has many new job posts, classified ads, land listings, and events to help you grow. Check out these resources:
Farm internships + help wanted
Buy, sell, rent farmland.
Find equipment, crops, livestock, more.