Did you have the experience of entering a coloring contest to win an over-sized Easter bunny, or perhaps a pie baking competition for gift basket filled with all manner of goodies? I clearly remember those moments from my childhood – moments that now seem quite unrealistic in terms of how things actually work in the world.
Here’s the equivalent over-sized Easter bunny for the young agrarian: Award-winning architect-turned-farmer Norma Burns has decided to give her beautiful farm away in an essay contest. Norma has been growing herbs, vegetables, and cut flowers on the certified organic, 13 acre farm for the last eighteen years. (more…)
Every year the Northeast Sustainable Agriculture and Research and Education (SARE) offer grants capping at $15,000 to commercial farmers who are looking to explore and innovate. Last years winners included projects so wonderfully creative that they bordered on zany– such as using mustard cover crops to biofumigate strawberries, pasturing rabbits for profit, and (my favorite) designing a low-impact amphibious vehicle for oyster harvesting.
This year’s deadline is in less than two weeks– on midnight Nov. 12! If you have an idea that you’d like to try out, you can download the application materials here, and there is a wealth of knowledge to gleaned from the grant page on SARE’s website.
The U.S. Department of Agriculture announced on October 8th, 2015 awards totaling $17 million through the Beginning Farmer and Rancher Development Program (BFRDP). BFRDP is the only USDA program exclusively dedicated to training new farmers and ranchers, particularly in sustainable production practices.
This year, 34 organizations received BFRDP grants for projects supporting beginning farmers in 25 states. In total, about $10.7 million in grant funding will support 22 projects spearheaded by community-based and non-profit organizations, while $6 million will go towards 12 beginning farmer programs housed within public universities or cooperative extension. Here are the winners!