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New York Grazing News - February 2014

New York Grazing News - February 2014

 

Are you counting down the days to spring yet? Officially, the first day of spring is March 20th so we can look forward to only 48 days of official winter. We all know, however, that in the Northeast we are unlikely to experience spring-like weather for a few weeks beyond that - even then it’s at least a few more weeks before the start of the grazing season. In the meantime, there are lots of great conferences and workshops coming up to “distract” you from the countdown, and make the time go by quickly – take a look at the events section below!

Please continue to send in notices of pasture walks and workshops by 3 days prior to the end of
each month - the Grazette is distributed monthly.

Upcoming Pasture Workshops and Related Events

Please note events listed are primarily held in New York State, unless indicated otherwise.

2014 Northeast Pasture Consortium Annual Conference and Meeting

When: Tuesday and Wednesday, February 4th and 5th
Where: Ramada Inn and Conference Center, State College, Pennsylvania

This year’s annual meeting precedes the Pennsylvania Association of Sustainable Agriculture (PASA) workshop and conference being held February 5th to 8th. The Consortium annual meeting will include research updates on managing pastures in riparian areas, ryegrass cultivar trials, mob grazing, flaxseed supplementation of grazing dairy cows, alternative forages, and much more. Registration before 1/24/14 is $175 for the full conference or $90 for a single day. For a complete agenda or additional registration information, e-mail Heather Grimes at West Virginia University Extension, or call 304-816-0663.


“Grassfed Rising” – Promoting Health from the Soil Up

When: Tuesday, February 11th and Tuesday, February 25th – 6:00 pm to 8:00 pm
Where: Tioga County Cooperative Extension, 56 Main Street, Owego

The Dairy and Livestock Educators from Cornell Cooperative Extension of South Central New York Area Ag Teams are teaming up to put on a series of meetings to promote Grassfed Livestock Production in Central New York. The meetings will start with producers enjoying a light meal of grassfed meat while they watch a video of selected speakers from this year’s Grassfed Exchange Conference in Bismark, North Dakota.

Speakers include Dr. Allen Williams on “State of the Grass Fed Industry”, Neil Dennis on “Utilizing High Stock Density to Improve Soil Health”, and many others. After the video we will have a discussion on participant’s plans and experience to promote Grassfed production in New York. There will also be a short presentation on Risk Management for Hay and Pastures. To RSVP e-mail Sharon VanDeuson or call 607-753-5078. Sponsoring this event is the New York Grazing Coalition and New York Ag and Markets Crop Insurance Education.


Regional Small Farm Conference: Farm Business Essentials

When: Saturday February 15th – 9:00 am to 4:00 pm
Where: Cornell Cooperative Extension (CCE) of Schuyler County, Schuyler County Human Services Complex, Room 120, 323 Owego Street, Montour Falls

This conference is for beginning and established farmers looking to strengthen a farm business. Topics include business opportunities, marketing, recordkeeping, risk management, and enterprise sessions on grazing, animal health, soil science and water management. For a complete agenda visit www.scnyag.org or call 607-535-7161. Advance registration is requested by Feb. 11th. The program cost is $20 per person or $30 per couple, and includes snacks and lunch. Please register on-line. For additional information or to register by phone or e-mail, please e-mail Schuyler CCE or call 607-535-7161.


Southwestern New York Pasture Expo

When: Monday, February 24th – 10:30 am to 3:00 pm
Where: Randolph Fire Hall, 70 Main Street, Randolph (Chautauqua County)

Seneca Trails Resource Conservation and Development (RC&D)

This year’s Pasture Expo will feature presentations on managed intensive grazing for dairy and livestock producers presented by local farmers and a guest speaker from Michigan, including: June Grabemeyer, Retired NRCS Economist, will present “Economic Benefits of Correcting Soil Health in Pastures”, and Fay Benson, Cornell Cooperative Extension Dairy Educator, South Central New York Regional Team, “Barley Fodder: What is it and will it work on my farm?” and “Crop Insurance Options”. Local farmers Dan Brown, who has an organic dairy in Great Valley, New York, on “Grazing Management Using a Robotic Milking System” and Steve Rockcastle, Beef Producer from Sherman, New York, “Using Managed Intensive Grazing to produce High Quality Grass Fed Beef”.

Sponsored in part by the New York Grazing Coalition and Seneca Trails Resource Conservation and Development (RC&D) Council. For more information, e-mail Lisa Kempisty or call 716-664-9502.


Step It Up in 2014 Grazing Conference

When: Tuesday, February 25th – 9:00 am to 3:00 pm
Where: Cornell Cooperative Extension (CCE) of Orleans County, Trolley Building, 12690 NYS Route 31, Albion

Keynote Speaker June Grabemeyer will present “Economic Benefits of Correcting Soil Health in Pastures”. There will be a farmer panel with beef and dairy farmers that will focus on pasture management practices. Other topics to be addressed at the conference are: Extending the Grazing Season; The Latest in Fodder Research; Crop Insurance Options For Your Farm; Tools for Pasture Recordkeeping. Vendors will be available to meet with and learn about their products.

Registration includes handout materials and lunch. The cost of registration is $40.00 for the first person and $25 for each additional person from the same farm. A discount of $10 is available to Cornell Cooperative Extension enrollees, for the first registrant, who registers by February 18, 2014. Please e-mail Cathy Wallace, or call 585-343-3040 extension 138 to register. A flyer and registration form is available online. Please register early as space is limited. For questions contact Nancy Glazier or call 585-315-7746. Sponsored in part by New York Grazing Coalition.


2014 Jefferson / Lewis / Northern New York Dairy Grazing School

When: Friday, February 28th – 10:00 am to 3:00 pm
Where: Elks Club, 511 Fulton Street, Carthage, New York

An educational program to improve grazing practices for all pasture based dairies: Organic and conventional. Featured speaker: Karen Hoffman, USDA-Natural Resources Conservation Service. Topics to include Mineral Supplementation in the Grazing Cow Herd; Assessment of herd health on grazing dairy farms; Nutritional considerations for grazing young stock; Agronomics (Your choice – let us know).

Pre-registration by February 18th - $35.00 ($25.00 per additional person, same farm) Includes lunch, materials and facility. To Pre-register or more information please e-mail Ron Kuck, Jefferson CCE, or call 315-788-8450 or e-mail Terri Taraska, Lewis CCE, or call 315-376-6270. More information can be found on the Jefferson County CCE web site, and their Facebook page. Sponsored by Cornell Cooperative Extension of Jefferson and Lewis Counties.

Advance Notice

2014 Vermont Organic Dairy Producers ConferenceWeb link graphic: University of Vermont Extension

When: Wednesday, March 5th – 9:00 am to 4:00 pm
Where: Judd Gymnasium, Vermont Technical College, Randolph Center, Vermont

Northeast Organic Farming Association of Vermont_NOFA-VTThis year, we will be looking at "resiliency" as a strategy to optimize and maintain soils and high quality forages on your organic dairy. View our Conference Brochure here for details. Keynote speakers include Drs. Silvia Abel-Caines of Organic Valley/CROPP; Fred Magdoff, University of Vermont (UVM) emeritus professor; and Tom Kilcer of Advanced Ag Systems. We will also include our popular research updates - with a focus on soil and forage quality projects - and our farmer panel.

Sponsored by University of Vermont Extension’s Northwest Crops and Soils Program and Northeast Organic Farming Association of Vermont (NOFA-VT) Organic Dairy and Technical Assistance program. You can register online at the University of Vermont web site, or by completing the registration form on the brochure and mailing it in.


NOFA-NY Organic Dairy and Field Crop ConferenceNortheast Organic Farming Association Organic Dairy & Field Crop Conference 2014

When: Friday, March 7th
Where: Holiday Inn, Auburn

The keynote speaker will be Gary Zimmer, farmer, author, agri-businessman and educator dedicated to biological agriculture. Recognized around the world for his commitment to improving farming through building healthy soils, Gary has spoken to farmers and agribusiness professionals all across the United States and in Canada, Europe, Australia, New Zealand, Ethiopia, Korea, and South Africa. More information about Gary’s work and other conference details are available at the Northeast Organic Farming Association web site.


“Grassfed Rising” – Promoting Health from the Soil Up

When: Thursday, March 13th and Thursday, March 20th – 6:00 pm to 8:00 pm
Where: Chemung County Fairgrounds, 170 Fairview Road, Horseheads

The Dairy and Livestock Educators from Cornell Cooperative Extension of South Central New York Area Ag Teams are teaming up to put on a series of meetings to promote Grassfed Livestock Production in Central New York. The meetings will start with producers enjoying a light meal of grassfed meat while they watch a video of selected speakers from this year’s Grassfed Exchange Conference in Bismark, North Dakota.

Speakers include Dr. Allen Williams on “State of the Grass Fed Industry”, Neil Dennis on “Utilizing High Stock Density to Improve Soil Health”, and many others. After the video we will have a discussion on participant’s plans and experience to promote Grassfed production in New York. There will also be a short presentation on Risk Management for Hay and Pastures.

To RSVP, e-mail Sharon VanDeuson, or call 607-753-5078. Sponsoring this event is the New York Grazing Collation and New York Ag and Markets Crop Insurance Education.


Grasstravaganza 2014: Pasture Soil Health Creates Wealth

When: Thursday to Saturday, July 17th to 19thGrasstravaganza 2014
Where: Morrisville State College, Morrisville

Speakers include Ray Archuleta, the NRCS “soil guy” from North Carolina, Jerry Brunetti of Agri-Dynamics, and Jim Gerrish, former University of Missouri researcher, writer, and now cattle rancher and consultant from Idaho. A Thursday evening dinner will kick-off the conference, and tours will be held on both Friday and Saturday afternoons. Sponsored by USDA-Natural Resources Conservation Service, New York Grazing Coalition, and Morrisville State College. Visit the Grasstravaganza web site for updates on the conference agenda and registration.

Pasture News

We’re sharing this because there must be someone out there with a great grass-based economic development or applied research idea!

New York Farm Viability Institute Announces Opening of 2014 Grant Program

New York Farm Viability InstituteThe New York Farm Viability Institute (NYFVI) is excited to announce the opening of its 2014 competitive grants program. Applications for funds are currently being accepted, with a final deadline of April 27, 2014. NYFVI is a farmer-led nonprofit organization that works with farmers throughout NY State to identify and prioritize immediate needs, and then invests in research and outreach projects to meet those needs.

The New York Farm Viability Institute awards grant funds to projects that help farmers improve profitability or otherwise provide successful models for other farms to follow. The Institute aims to invest in projects that reflect the diversity of New York agriculture, incorporating diverse production sectors, farm sizes, production practices, and geographic regions. The NYFVI Board of Directors places an emphasis on funding projects that demonstrate real farm-level improvements during the life of the grant funding.

For 2014, NYFVI will be funding projects in two distinct but complementary grant programs. Applications to the Agriculture Innovation Center grant program should focus on agricultural economic development, including business development, financial analysis, product marketing, and value-added agricultural products, among others. Applications to the Outreach and Applied Research grant program should focus on applied agricultural research, as well as outreach and education to promote new ideas and techniques.

Potential applicants are strongly encouraged to read the full request for proposals for the applicable grant program, which can be found at New York Farm Viability Institute web site. All applications must be submitted online. For questions or help with proposal development, project leaders are encouraged to e-mail contact NYFVI Grant Manager Kevin Jablonski.

NYFVI staff will be conducting a series of workshops to describe the funding opportunities and application requirements, and to help project leaders develop successful applications. Currently, there are two webinars and one face-to-face workshop scheduled:

  • Webinar: Thursday, February 6 at 10 a.m.
  • Webinar: Thursday, February 13 at 6 p.m.
  • Workshop: Wednesday, March 12 at 10 a.m. in Syracuse

Details on how to sign up for workshops will be posted on the NYFVI website in the coming weeks. Be sure to follow NYFVI on Facebook for the latest updates. The New York Farm Viability Institute receives generous support from New York State legislative appropriations, through the New York State Department of Agriculture and Markets.