Welcome to the Organic Farming Exchange
According to the USDA, there were 256 organic agriculture operations in Michigan in 2008, for a total of 58,077 acres of farmland. A 2008 National Organic Production Survey counted 14,540 organic farms and ranches in the US, comprising 4.1 million acres of land. The results of the 2012 National Agriculture Survey will be available February 2014.
2014 Organic Reporting Session
Registration is NOW Open!
Its time to register for the Michigan State University Organic Reporting Session. We are offering more time for discussion with participants and presenters, including several MSU researchers who are conducting research in and for organic farming systems. Please bring your questions and good ideas for future research and your observations in your own farming. Here is the link to register:
The day will offer presentations of farmer useful research, Q&A with discussion, Farmer Roundtable with researchers and updates in the news for organic farmers.
We hope that you can attend and bring a friend.
Update: Both the House and Senate passed the omnibus package this week, and the President is expected to sign the bill shortly. For a detailed breakdown of the funding levels provided in the bill, see our updated appropriations chart.
On Monday, January 13, House and Senate appropriators released the text of the fiscal year (FY) 2014 omnibus appropriations bill and report, which will fund the government through the remainder of FY 2014.
Organic Reporting Session at Michigan State Univeristy
Friday March 7
Brody Complex on Harrison Rd at west end of MSU’s campus, East Lansing MI
To register go to WEB site: commerce.cashnet.com/msu_3714
What’s On Offer?
Four MSU research reports on organic research on:
Food waste compost production system update using hot compost and worms-John Biernbaum-MSU Dept of Horticulture
Fruit production and insect organic management -Matt Grieshop, MSU Dept of Entomology
Organic raspberry and cherry in Haygrove Tunnel systems-Eric Hanson MSU Dept of Horticulture
Organic soybean varieties for Michigan-Dan Rossman MSUE
Following the presentations we invite organic farmers to join in conversation with the researchers to identify key values and challenges of these researched systems and methods as well as other areas where organic farming research is needed.
Lunch will be at Brody Café Meeting room (upstairs of Brody Complex) for organic updates including:
- Whats organic in the farm bill
- Organic prices for crops in 2014
- Networking and seeing old and new friends.
Please join us in this exciting event: You can register online by going to this web site (do not place www in front) commerce.cashnet.com/msu_3714
2014 Farm Bill Passed (at loooong last!)
Yes it includes Organic cost share to help farmers with the cost of organic certification
Yes it includes even more support and funding for organic research through the OREI funding program!
Yes it supports conservation programs such as organic transition program and hoop house cost share.
(5-year totals in millions of dollars)
|Farm Bill Program||2008 Farm Bill||2014 Farm Bill|
|Organic Agriculture Research and Extension Initiative||$78||$100|
|Specialty Crop Research Initiative||$180||$400*|
|Beginning Farmer and Rancher Development Program||$75||$100|
|Organic Production and Market Data Initiatives**||$5||$5|
|Foundation for Food and Agriculture Research||n/a||$200|
* The new farm bill provides $80 million per year for the Specialty Crop Research Initiative and establishes permanent baseline funding for this program in future years. The total ten-year cost of the program is $800 million.
** While this program is not included in the Research Title of the new farm bill, the Organic Data Initiative does provide funding for data collection and other economic research analysis through USDA research agencies.
See the full scoop at:http://sustainableagriculture.net/blog/2014-farm-bill-drilldown-ree/ provided by the National Sustainable Agriculture Coalition
Note this form helps walk you through the steps to be eligible for funding.
Visit http://www.nrcs.usda.gov/wps/portal/nrcs/detail/mi/newsroom/releases/?cid=STELPRDB1242511 for program descriptions and details.
Closing Date: February 24, 2014
The primary objective of the VAPG program is to help agricultural producers enter into value-added activities related to the processing and/or marketing of bio-based value-added products. Generating new products, creating and expanding marketing opportunities, and increasing producer income are the end goals of this program. You may receive priority if you are a beginning farmer or rancher, a socially-disadvantaged farmer or rancher, a small or medium-sized farm or ranch structured as a family farm, a farmer or rancher cooperative, or are proposing a mid-tier value chain, as defined in the Program Regulation. Grants are awarded on a competitive basis.
Estimated Program Funding: Approximately $10.5 million in carry over funding from fiscal year (FY) 2013 is available to help agricultural producers enter into value-added activities. The NOFA is being published prior to the Congressional enactment of a full-year appropriation for FY 2014. Should additional funding be made available during FY 2014 for this program, the Rural Business-Cooperative Service, (RBS) will continue to fund applications received under this announcement based upon the applications score. At this time, the exact amount of funding that will be made available to this program for FY 2014 is unknown. Anyone interested in submitting an application for funding under this program should consult the Rural Development Value Added Producer Grant Program website periodically for updated information regarding any FY 2014 funding for the Program.
Maximum Grant Amount: $75,000 for planning grants; $200,000 for working capital grants Cost Sharing Requirement: Cash or eligible in-kind matching funds equal to at least the amount of grant funds requested.
Specialty CROP Opportunities
Some of you may be interested in a new on-line resource called “SPECIALTY CROPportunities”, which was just launched on the Ontario Ministry of Agriculture website. SPECIALTY CROPportunities was designed to assist growers considering production of a wide range of non-traditional crops, including many specialty vegetables and culinary herbs. It has information on agronomics, marketing and pests for 100 non-traditional crops, and more crops will be added in the future. While this was designed for Ontario growers, much of the information should be broadly applicable to all growers in the Great Lakes region. Fruit and vegetable growers can visit this site as a resource for production and management practices.
Organic Research and Outreach in the North Central Region
This document was prepared by Ceres Trust, a private foundation that seeks to promote and support organic research in the Midwest. Here you will find lists of all the organic work done by land grant universities, including and especially Michigan State Univeristy! Note that in 2012, Organic Research and Farming Foundation placed MSU in the top position, as we offer organic research, organic acreage, professors with organic farming in their scope of work, Student Organic Farm and training program, and many research papers, as you can see, that present results of organic research.