Vol. 89, No. 5
- A Message About Mosquitoes
- Energy News
- MassGrown & Fresher “Riding the Rails” Campaign Continues in September/October
- 33 Grants for Environmental Improvements Awarded to Massachusetts
- Compost Meeting at Great Brook Farm Discusses Revisions to Compost Program
- Must Be The Milk Billboard Campaign Kicks Off
- 2012 Cranberry Crop to be Plentiful
- New Wine and Cheese Trail focuses on Massachusetts’ Rich Culinary Offerings
- Hops Field Day
- MA Malted Grains: Connecting Craft Beer Fans to MA Local Ingredients
- 2013 - 2014 New England Greenhouse Floriculture Guide Now Available
- Wildlife Habitat Grants Available for Landowners
- Massachusetts Exhibitors ‘Fair’ Very Well at the Big E
- 2013 Massachusetts Agriculture Calendars Now Available
Upcoming Events / Workshops
- Public Meeting - Emerald Ash Borer in Massachusetts
- MDAR Ag Business Training Courses Gear Up
- PVGrows Fall Forum
- MA Farm Winery and Growers Association Features Their First Wine Festival
- First Annual Barley Fest
- National Food Day - October 24
- New Entry Farm Business Courses
- Making Land Available for Farming Sessions
- Top Reasons Why You Should Attend Northeast Greenhouse Conference and Expo
- USDA Grants Awarded to Promote New Economic Opportunity for Farmers and Ranchers through Local and Regional Projects
- NRCS Awards Conservation Innovation Grants for Three Massachusetts Projects
- Federal Crop Insurance Reminders
- Classified Ads
- About the Farm & Market Report
Special Guest Column
A Message About Mosquitoes
- Increases the total net metering cap from 3% to 6% of peak load, and exempts certain projects from the cap altogether
- Increases the private net metering cap from 1% to 3%. Increases the net metering cap for governmental entities and municipalities from 2% to 3%
- Exempts net metering facilities that generate a small amount of electricity from the private net metering cap. Exempts certain net metering facilities whose capacity is under 10 kW or 25 kW, depending on the circuit it will interconnect with
- Adds anaerobic digestion to the list of allowable net metering generation facilities
- Directs the DPU to develop an enforceable standard interconnection timeline
- National Grid:
- Nantucket Electric:
- Unitil: www.unitil.com/energy-for-residents/electric-information/distributed-energy-resources/net-metering
- WMECO: www.wmeco.com/residential/understandbill/ratesrules/NetMetering.aspx
MassGrown & Fresher "Riding the Rails” Campaign Continues in September/October Click to see the full size image.
33 Grants for Environmental Improvements Awarded to Massachusetts
Awarded through the Massachusetts Department of Agricultural Resources’ (MDAR) Agricultural Environmental Enhancement Program (AEEP) grants went to farms in the towns of Ashfield, Becket, Carver, Cataumet, East Sandwich, EastTaunton, Fairhaven, Halifax, Hardwick, Hawley, Lakeville, Leverett, Middleboro, Plympton, Rehoboth, Rochester, Shelburne, Sherborn, Stow, Westhampton, Westport, Winchendon and Worthington.
These grants will fund projects such as automated irrigations systems for cranberry operations, milkhouse wastewater treatment, compost facilities, fencing, and drip irrigation. AEEP funds practices that improve water quality, promote water conservation, and improve air quality. Farmers selected to participate are reimbursed for the approved costs of materials up to $25,000.
AEEP is one of several programs within MDAR’s Division of Agricultural Conservation and Technical Assistance (DACTA), whose mission is to advance the conservation and utilization of agricultural resources through preservation, environmental stewardship, technology, technical assistance and education in order to enhance the viability of agricultural enterprises and safeguard natural resources. AEEP has funded 422 projects statewide since 1999, providing growers and producers approximately $5 million to address environmental concerns on their farms.
For more information on the AEEP Program, visit www.mass.gov/agr/programs/aeep. For information on the Division of Technical Assistance programs, visit www.mass.gov/agr/divisions/ag_technical_assistance.
Compost Meeting at Great Brook Farm Discusses Revisions to Compost Program
Changes to Agricultural Composting Program
- Revised or new definitions including Agricultural Unit; Agricultural Materials; On-Site
- New process for animal carcass composting
- Increased volume and variety of waste organic materials that farms can import for composting. On a daily basis the regulations propose to allow farms to import 30 tons with a maximum of 105 tons per week
- Requiring farmers to undergo training before receiving a composting registration
- Defining “agricultural composting” as a process where the majority of the inputs are agricultural or the majority of the compost is used by the farm
Must Be The Milk Billboard Campaign Kicks Off
- Educate people about dairy farming
- Promote the purchase of milk and dairy foods
- Raise funds for New England and New York’s dairy farmers
2012 Cranberry Crop to be Plentiful
New Wine and Cheese Trail focuses on Massachusetts’ Rich Culinary Offerings The Samek family and Governor Patrick Dave Smith and his staff from Smith's Country Cheese Commissioner Watson, Governor Patrick and John Samek talk about the economic importance of the wine and cheese sectors
Hops Field Day Steve Prouty, in green shirt, discusses his hop crop with growers, researchers and brewers.
MA Malted Grains: Connecting Craft Beer Fans to MA Local Ingredients
2013 - 2014 New England Greenhouse Floriculture Guide Now Available
Wildlife Habitat Grants Available for Landowners
Massachusetts Exhibitors ‘Fair’ Very Well at the Big E Click to see the full size image. Click to see the full size image.
2013 Massachusetts Agriculture Calendars Now Available
- January - Monica Howe, New Braintree - Barn at sunset at Sunny Side Acres, New Braintree
- February - Susie Mulliken, New Braintree - Two horses at Trium Searah Farm, New Braintree
- March - Jane Lyon, Easthampton – Maple syrup at Ledgeline Farm, Chesterfield
- April (and cover) - Kristen Schartner, Bolton - Bumble bee on apple blossom at Schartner Farms, Bolton
- May - Debi Hogan, Seekonk – Siberian Iris at Tranquil Lake Nursery, Rehoboth
- June - Rich Antinarelli, Dedham - Cow at the Natural Resources Trust of Easton in North Easton
- July - Joshua Goldstein, Amherst – Traditional Hay Tedding at Amethyst Farm, Amherst
- August - David Cawston, Roslindale – Horse Team at Marshfield Fair
- September - Christopher Kieffer, Salem – Wine Grapes growing at Alfalfa Farm Winery, Topsfield
- October - Chris Clegg, Seekonk - Rainbow Carrots at Four Town Farm, Seekonk
- November - Emily Dines, Williamsburg - Corn Cobs at The Village Green, Williamsburg
- December - Seth Cranston, Ashfield – Sunrise at Cranston’s Christmas Tree Farm, Ashfield MA
Public Meeting - Emerald Ash Borer in Massachusetts
MDAR Ag Business Training Courses Gear Up
- Course Description: For pre-venture and just beginning farmers still trying to decide on their basic early ideas – a five session course: - Exploring-the-Small-Farm-Dream-Description.pdf
- 2012 Exploring Your Small Farm Dream Application Form
- Course Description: For those a step beyond Explorer who have firm access to land and a clearer sense of what they want and are capable of doing, but who do not yet have a financial , marketing and personnel track record for their enterprise – a six session course: Planning For Startup Description
- 2012 Planning for Startup Application Form
- Course Description: For existing agricultural enterprises with at least two years of income generating operation and farm record keeping. that are seeking an in-depth tune-up and are preparing to make new investment and/or prepare for expanded operation – a 10 session course 2013-14 Tilling the Soil Description
- 2012 Tilling the Soil of Opportunity Application Form
PVGrows Fall Forum
MA Farm Winery and Growers Association Features Their First Wine Festival!
- Amherst Farm Winery - Amherst
- Coastal Vineyards - South Dartmouth
- Hardwick Vineyard & Winery - Hardwick
- Mineral Hills Winery - Florence
- Mt Warner Vineyards - Hadley
- Still River Winery - Harvard
- Travessia - New Bedford
- Truro Vineyards of Cape Cod - Truro
- Westport Rivers Vineyard & Winery - Westport
First Annual Barley Fest
National Food Day - October 24
New Entry Farm Business Courses
- Select farm enterprises, create enterprise budgets and develop a farm business plan;
- Identify the markets in your area and promote your farm products;
- Find and evaluate the materials, equipment, and additional information and resources you will need as a farmer; and
- Develop a crop production or livestock husbandry plan.
Option 2: Online Farm Business Planning Course
Flexible schedule and location with 1 mandatory in-person orientation session to be held in downtown Boston, MA. Course fee: $500, or sliding scale based on tuition scholarship application ($100 - $500). For more information and to apply to the online course, please visit nesfp.nutrition.tufts.edu/training, Questions? email Maura Beaufait at email@example.com or call 978-654-6745.
Making Land Available for Farming Sessions
RSVP: www.tinyurl.com/TopsfieldLandLease. For more info. contact Becca Weaver, Farmland Matching Service Coordinator, Bweaver@comteam.org or 978-654-6745.
Top Reasons Why You Should Attend Northeast Greenhouse Conference and Expo
- Attend educational workshops on a wide range of topics for both growers and retailers from leading experts from the industry and academia on the latest on biological controls, pest and disease updates, greenhouse culture, retail marketing, business management, plant nutrition, plant growth regulators, and alternative crops and uses for your greenhouses in the off season.
- A total of 11 one hour presentations (credits vary by state) will be offered for the six New England states plus New York, New Jersey and Pennsylvania. Please check the schedule on the program brochure, as some of these presentations are at the same time.
- Dedicated tradeshow time to visit with over 120 innovative exhibitors and gather information on products and services that will benefit your business.
- Time to network with others in the industry, to share ideas and build relationships.
- Obtain your copy of the 2013-14 edition of the Guide that will be available to attendees of the New England Greenhouse Conference at a special conference price of $25 per copy.
USDA Grants Awarded to Promote New Economic Opportunity for Farmers and Ranchers through Local and Regional Projects
- More than 40 projects that connect farmers and ranchers to new customers by establishing new markets and other retail outlets, community supported agriculture programs or extend the market season;
- Seventeen projects that will support the use of new delivery approaches such as online and mobile markets, broadening the customer base for several businesses;
- Thirteen projects that reinforce USDA's commitment to new and beginning farmers and ranchers, increasing opportunities, training and support for those just getting started;
- Twelve projects that focus on initiatives that support American Indian and Alaskan Native communities, and new opportunities for Latino, refugee and immigrant farmers;
- Ten projects that will help hospitals and health care organizations improve eating habits in their communities through education and the direct marketing of fresh local produce; and
- Nine projects that support agritourism, bringing visitors and consumers to farms and ranches.
$30,852 to Essex Agricultural Society dba Northeast Harvest, Topsfield, MA, for providing wireless Electronic Benefits Transfer machines to five farmers markets that do not have them, increasing sales at the markets and providing Federal benefit recipients access to healthy, locally grown food.
NRCS Awards Conservation Innovation Grants for Three Massachusetts Projects
Federal Crop Insurance Reminders
Producers wishing to purchase Federal Crop Insurance or producers currently insured who want to make changes to their existing policies are reminded of the following deadlines:
- November 20, 2012 - Apples, Cranberries & Peaches
- November 30, 2012 - Cultivated Clams (Barnstable, Bristol, Dukes, Nantucket & Plymouth Counties Only)
- January 31, 2013 - Adjusted Gross Revenue (AGR) & AGR-Lite (Existing Policies)
- March 15, 2013 - AGR-Lite (New Policies), Corn, Fresh Market Sweet Corn, Potatoes & Tobacco and most other spring planted crops
Insured producers are reminded to monitor their crops for insurable damage. throughout the growing and harvesting season. If you find damage notify your crop insurance agent within 72 hours of discovery, 15 days before harvesting begins and within 15 days after harvesting is completed on the insurance unit. Two other important reminders:
- Direct marketed crops must have a yield appraisal before they are harvested, if loss is anticipated.
- Do not destroy crop evidence that is needed to support your claim without clear direction, in writing, from the insurance adjuster.
In Every Issue
- The non-profit organization, Grow Food Northampton, will lease in 2013 small plots (.25 to 1.5 acres) of in-town, prime farmland for intensive commercial farming at their 121-acre Northampton Community Farm, in Florence, MA. Seek lessees who have two years minimum commercial growing experience, a solid farm business plan, and alignment with Grow Food Northampton’s goals for sustainable community agriculture. Applications due November 1st. Please email firstname.lastname@example.org for a full application packet and go to www.growfoodnorthampton.com to learn more.
- Agricultural excavation – Grading services: We provide earth moving, drainage, land/pasture reclamation, greenhouse preparation, and rock raking services. Includes but not limited to orchards/equine facilities/cranberry bogs/nurseries.Chris Merrill Excavating, email@example.com, 978-897-9977.
- The Happy Chicken Tractor Day Care for Chickens. Durable, mobile chicken tractor. Provides safer daycare for 8-10 hens. Rolls easily around the yard on 10-inch wheels. Welded aluminum frame is built to last. Includes shade/rain cover, 10-inch wheels perch, wood-frame doors, ground stakes and Tag-Along waterer. Assembles without tools. Made in Massachusetts. thelittlechickenfactory.com
- FOR SALE: Miniature sheep (Ouessant/Shetland crosses) -- 50-70 lbs, 22-23 inches at the shoulder - 1/3 to 1/2 the size of regular sheep. Robust, easy to handle and great for small acreage. Many colors, lovely wool for spinners. Suitable for use with herding dogs, as horse companions, for vineyard/orchard weed control and lawn mowing. www.bretonmeadowfarm.com, 781-259-0563
- Seek Project Coordinator: for newly released online consumer marketing program PlantSomethingMA.com. This position offers great variation and an opportunity to work from your own office. We are looking for a person who can bring multiple skills to our program; someone who is able to multi task easily and communicate effectively. A successful candidate will be working within a non-profit/committee setting and must have strong computer, organizational and communication skills. Preference will be given to those individuals with social media, website and marketing experience. Details here.