September 2015

Organic Agriculture September 11, 2015 Print Friendly and PDF

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In this issue:

USDA NASS Organic Survey Results on September 17

USDA’s National Agricultural Statistics Service (NASS) will publish the 2014 Organic Survey report on Thursday, September 17, at Noon ET. The 2014 Organic Survey results will be accessible online in several formats, including NASS’ searchable Quick Stats database, a full PDF publication, and summary data Highlights. For more information about the Organic Survey, visit http://www.agcensus.usda.gov/Publications/Organic_Survey/.

Organic Farming Research Foundation Farmer Survey Deadline September 14

The Organic Farming Research Foundation (OFRF) 2015 National Survey of Organic Farmers asks farmers and ranchers to share their experiences, and let the scientific and policy communities know what areas of research are most important to advance organic farming. The survey will remain available online until September 14, 2015. With only days left to take the survey, the OFRF asks all organic farmers who have not yet completed the survey to join the effort and participate at this link: http://opinion.wsu.edu/agresearch/

Corn Breeding Field Days on September 15 and 18

The Breeding Non-Commodity Corn for for Organic Production Systems NIFA OREI project has two announcements for field days on their website. The first, held by Practical Farmers of Iowa is on September 15 in Luther, IA from 9:30AM-1PM. The day will consist of presentations made by various experts in the field of specialty corn, visual displays of products, and a field tour followed by a meal using specialty corns. For more information on attending and the location, contact Practical Farmers of Iowa: http://practicalfarmers.org/about/contact/

On September 18, the Mandaamin Institute will host a field day on Breeding Corn for Organic Farmers with Organic Farmers. The workshop is co-sponsored by the Biodynamic Association of North America, Pounder Bros Farm, Rohrer Enterprises, and Pendragon Specialties. Find out more by downloading this flyer about the event or visiting this link. Register in advance for the event and lunch by contacting Walter Goldstein (262-248-1533), W2331 Kniep Road, Elkhorn, WI 53121; wgoldstein@mandaamin.org.

New Recordings from the 2015 Organic Agriculture Research Symposium

Recordings for most of the presentations from the 2015 Organic Agriculture Research Symposium (including many sessions that were not broadcast as live webinars) are now available on this website hosted by eOrganic: http://eorganic.info/oars2015. Newly uploaded recordings include the following topics: holistic livestock care, plant breeding, biological control, and the economics of organics. The symposium took place in February 2015 in conjunction with the MOSES conference in La Crosse, Wisconsin. The recordings are also available as a playlist on the eOrganic YouTube channel.

The 2016 Organic Agriculture Research Symposium will take place on January 20, 2016 in Pacific Grove, CA, immediately before the Ecological Farming Association’s annual EcoFarm Conference. The symposium will feature researchers from all disciplines related to organic farming and food systems, and other systems of sustainable agriculture that employ techniques compatible with organic standards. Registration isn't open yet as of early September 2015, but we'll keep you posted!

Environmental Benefits of Organic Agriculture Webinar Series

The USDA Science and Technology Training Library Webinar Portal for Conservation of Natural Resources offers live and recorded webinars on topics related to organic farming, natural resources conservation and climate change. Listings include a series on the environmental benefits of organic agriculture, presented by the USDA NRCS in partnership with Oregon Tilth. The final webinar in this series, on water quality, takes place on September 23, 2015, and registration information is available here. Find all upcoming and archived organic NRCS webinars at this link.

ASA Organic Webinars

The American Society of Agronomy is running a series of webinars on organic agriculture. Topics include yields, pest management and nutrient management on organic farms. The webinars cost $25 each and continuing education credits are available. To find more information on registration, go to the following link and scroll down to the Revisiting Organic Agriculture webinar information: http://agronomy.peachnewmedia.com/store/provider/custompage.php?pageid=2.

Discussing Climate Change in Rural Montana Webinar Recording

Fabian Menalled of Montana State University recently presented a webinar on Discussing Climate Change in Rural Montana, which is archived here, and followed by a presentation by Paul LaChapelle, also of MSU, on the upcoming Bozeman Extension Climate Science Conference on December 8-10, 2015. The webinar was organized by ANREP Climate Science Initiative, an official initiative of the Association of Natural Resource Extension Professionals. More information about the Bozeman Extension Climate Science Conference can be found here.

New Organic Tomato Breeding Research Project Website

eOrganic hosts websites for a growing number of organic research projects. Our latest addition is TOMI, also known as the Tomato Organic Management and Improvement Project  TOMI is a multi-state, interdisciplinary NIFA OREI project with the goal of developing an integrated approach to managing foliar pathogens while allowing growers to deliver tomatoes with exceptional flavor to the local marketplace. Find out about their objectives and collaborators at http://eorganic.info/tomi and check back for updates as the project progresses.

New Article on Trap Cropping of Yellowmargined Leaf Beetles

Researchers from Auburn University and the University of Florida recently published an article about their ongoing research on trap cropping of yellowmargined leaf beetles. Read about the article in Entomology Today: Trap Cropping May Offer Growers an Alternative to Pesticides. Researchers in this group presented a webinar on this subject in December 2014, the recording of which is available here.

Online Course in Ecological Soil Management

The Center for Innovation in Teaching and Learning at the University of Illinois Urbana Champaign is offering an 8-week online course in Ecological Soil Management, from October 19-December 9, 2015 at 630-830PM Central Time. The course includes:

  • Theory and practice underpinning soil management for organic and sustainable farming systems.
  • Why and how soil health and its stewardship are the foundation of organic and sustainable production.
  • Blended course draws on farmer and researcher strategies, data, and experiences and, uses farm case studies developed with support from Organic Valley and content developed for National eXtension’s eOrganic.community of practice.

For non-credit students, see http://citl.illinois.edu/courses/section/120158/99972.  For 3 credits degree or non-degree students, see http://citl.illinois.edu/courses/section/120158/65807.

National Organic Program News

The National Organic Standards Board (NOSB) will have a public meeting in Stowe, Vermont from October 26-29, 2015. The agenda of topics and current proposals are available at http://www.ams.usda.gov/event/nosb-meeting-2015-vt. In advance of the meeting, the NOSB is accepting public comments at the meeting and on 2 webinars, for which advance registration is required. Find more information at this link.

eOrganic Mission

eOrganic is a web community where organic agriculture farmers, researchers, and educators network; exchange objective, research- and experience-based information; learn together; and communicate regionally, nationally, and internationally. If you have expertise in organic agriculture and would like to develop U.S. certified organic agriculture information, join us at http://eorganic.info.

eOrganic Resources

Find all eOrganic articles, videos and webinars at http://extension.org/organic_production

Connect with eOrganic on Facebook and Twitter, and subscribe to our YouTube channel!

Have a question about organic farming? Use the eXtension Ask an Expert service to connect with the eOrganic community!

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This is an eOrganic article and was reviewed for compliance with National Organic Program regulations by members of the eOrganic community. Always check with your organic certification agency before adopting new practices or using new materials. For more information, refer to eOrganic's articles on organic certification.

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This work is supported by the USDA National Institute of Food and Agriculture, New Technologies for Ag Extension project.