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In This Issue
Captain Planet Foundation Grants Due Jan. 15
Join the Central Appalachian Network Mailing List!
Agriculture in the Classroom Challenge Grant Due Jan. 20
Conservation Stewardship Program Sign-Up Deadline Jan. 13
Norman Foundation Social Justice Grants
Heritage Turkeys: To Save Them, We Must Eat Them
How Burlington, VT Supports Small, New, and Local Farmers
How is Local Food Marketed in the U.S.?

The mission of the West Virginia food and Farm Coalition is to build, support and strengthen a statewide network of the many kinds of people involved in developing West Virginia's local food economies, with the intertwined goals of improving access to healthy, locally-produced food for all West Virginians and helping to viable food and farm businesses to grow.  The Coalition was launched in 2010 by the West Virginia Community Development Hub with funding from the Claude Worthington Benedum Foundation.


We believe that as West Virginia farmers and food producers become more directly connected to West Virginia consumers, the results include healthier people, greater business opportunities, stronger communities, and a unique economy reflecting our state's proud heritage of self-sufficient food production.


The Coalition is guided by a 14-person Steering and Transition Committee which is helping to determine its future as an organization and to develop a more permanent, participatory leadership structure.


The West Virginia Community
Development Hub
is a statewide non-profit organization with the mission of engaging communities and providers in an intentional, aligned and continuous system of community development.
Join WVFFC's Mailing List!
Sign up for this newsletter or change your subscription


This biweekly newsletter provides a regular compilation of events, resources, and ideas that are relevant to farms and food access in West Virginia.  Whether you are a producer, consumer, nonprofit organization, educator, agency or food-related business, there may be something here to help you with your work.  The information in this newsletter is compiled by the West Virginia Food & Farm Coalition, which is an organizing initiative coordinated by the West Virginia Community Development Hub


In addition to this newsletter, we now offer timely updates on specific food and farm topics.  To subscribe to updates on things you're interested in, go here and enter your email address.   


Happy Holidays from WVFFC!  

Whether this season finds you braving the snow to pull up the year's last carrots, wrestling with final exams and end-year reviews, triumphantly hosting your first winter farmers market, or simply curled up in a warm place with family, we hope it finds you well.  Thanks for another great year, and here's to an abundant 2012.



WV Food & Farm Coalition News  


Register Now for "Road Map for a Food Economy"!

Registration is now open for the January 23 convening and follow-up to the Regional Roundtables.  Find more details and register here.


Charm Farm Hosts Young Farmer Mixer with WVFFC


On Dec. 9-10, young and future farmers from across WV gathered for a holiday mixer and potluck, thanks to the fantastic hosting efforts of Mike Kwasniewski and his family at the Charm Farm.  With a little help from WVFFC as well as WesMonTy RC&D and veteran farmer Tootie Jones, the mixer brought together about 20 current, past and future farmers under 40 years old to share advice, trade canned goods, discuss farm issues, tour the Charm Farm and enjoy one another's company.  Although tone the mixer was informal, topics of interest during dinner included selling produce to school systems and the legalities of marketing milk and cheese.  Future mixers are already in the works for spring and summer of 2012.  To join the invitation list, contact or update your WVFFC subscription preferences to include "Resources for Young and Beginning Farmers."



West Virginia Food News


Greenbrier County Senator to Head Agriculture Committee

Senator Ron Miller, of Greenbrier County, will chair the Senate Agriculture Committee for the upcoming legislative season.  The Beckley Register-Herald reports here on Miller's farming background, which includes raising sheep and growing hay.  Miller said he plans to reach out to West Virginia farmers and to promote local foods in local markets.


Morgan County Farmers Win WV Conservation Farm of the Year

For their commitment to their farming heritage, as well as to sustainable farming techniques, Laura and Mark Glascock of Quail Hollow Farm won the 2011 West Virginia Farm of the Year.  The Journal reports here on the Glascocks' wide array of farming activities, from apples to vegetables, to value-added products, totaling 50 acres in cultivation.  The article also highlights their best-management practices, such as no-till corn planting, and using specially-designed low tunnels to protect young corn.


Winery, Distillery Makes Splash in Marion County

Thanks to a change in state law to allow for mini-distilleries, Mickey Heston now runs the popular Heston Farm Winery and Pinchgut Hollow Distillery, which doubles as an event venue.  The farm grows its own buckwheat and corn for whiskey and many of its own grapes for wine -- and is the only distillery in the nation licensed to make buckwheat whiskey.  The State Journal reports here.



National Food News  


Healthy Food Financing Initiative Reintroduced in Congress

The initiative would authorize a $125 million program providing one-time loan and grant financing to establish, expand, or renovate supermarkets, grocery stores, food cooperatives, farmers markets, and other food retail outlets in underserved low to mid-income communities across the U.S.  Read more from the National Sustainable Agriculture Coalition here, and find details on the bill here


Western North Carolina Leads in Local Food Sales

Seven billion dollars -- that's the figure that local food sales are predicted to reach nationally in 2012 according to a report released last month by the U.S. Department of Agriculture. The Appalachian Sustainable Agriculture Project estimates that in Western North Carolina, consumers alone purchased $62 million of local food in 2010.  Local purchasing has quadrupled since the Asheville-based nonprofit's Appalachian Grown™ certification and branding program began in 2007. Learn more about the Applachian Grown program and a recent consumer survey here in the Asheville Mountain XPress. 


Upcoming Events
in and near West Virginia

Our Events Section is taking a break this week.  We hope you're able to take one, too.  Happy Holidays!


(grants, awards, partnership ideas)

* Find a full grants calendar here, on our website!

Captain Planet Foundation Grants   

 Next deadline: Jan. 15, 2012


Funds support innovative programs that inspire youth to participate in community service through environmental stewardship activities. An additional priority is to fund programs that encourage environment-based education in schools. All funded projects must involve young people ages 6-18 (elementary through high school). Nonprofit organizations and public schools are eligible to apply for grants of up to $2,500. Applications are reviewed three times per year; the first deadline for 2012 is January 15. Online application guidelines are available on the Foundation's website.

Join the Central Appalachian Network Mailing List!   


For over 15 years, the Central Appalachian Network (CAN) has united six nonprofits in West Virginia, Kentucky, Ohio, Tennessee, and Virginia.  The Network focuses on working together to create economic opportunities that are environmentally sustainable, build on social and natural capital, and meet the needs of local people.  West Virginia's two CAN organizations play key roles in economic development: the Center for Economic Options and the Natural Capital Investment Fund.


To stay up-to-date on regional economic development opportunities and news, sign up for the CAN Newsletter here (lower left-hand side of the website).


Agriculture in the Classroom Challenge Grant    

Deadline: Jan. 20, 2012       


The program, with individual awards of up to $300,000, seeks to promote and strengthen education in agriscience and agribusiness in order to help ensure a qualified workforce to serve the food and agricultural sciences system.  The grant also aims to promote complementary linkages  in the food and agricultural sciences in order to encourage more students to pursue and complete a degree in the food and agricultural sciences.  Eligibility: Independent school districts, state-controlled Institutions of Higher Education, public secondary schools, public or private, nonprofit junior or community colleges, and nonprofit organizations  Learn more here.  

Conservation Stewardship Program Sign-Up    

Deadline: Jan. 13, 2012          

The Conservation Stewardship Program offers technical and financial assistance to farmers for adopting and maintaining high standards of resource conservation and environmental stewardship.  Assistance is geared to both the active management of existing conservation systems and for implementing new conservation activities on land in agricultural production.  The USDA's Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) administers the program.


Learn more about the application process from the National Sustainable Agriculture Coalition here, or contact your local NRCS office (locate your office here).


Norman Foundation Social Justice Grants     

   Deadline: Rolling     


The Norman Foundation supports efforts throughout the United States that strengthen the ability of communities to determine their own economic, environmental, and social well-being, and that help people control those forces that affect their lives. These efforts may promote economic justice and development through community organizing, coalition building, and policy reform efforts; work to prevent the disposal of toxics in communities and to link environmental issues with economic and social justice; or connect community-based economic and environmental justice organizing to national and international reform efforts. Learn more here.

Food for Thought
(fruitful reading, research & case studies)

Heritage Turkeys: To Save Them, We Must Eat Them  

A decade ago there were fewer than 100 Narragansett turkeys being raised on a few hobby farms. The gamy-tasting meat has a flavor that most Americans have never tasted. "They're delicious," says Slow Food USA's Josh Viertel. "And they're at risk of being gone forever."  NPR reports here

How Burlington, VT Supports Small, New, and Local Farmers  

Mark Bittman of the New York Times explains how Intervale anchors regional food system in VT - a good explanation of how Burlington supported small, new and local farmers, from one-acre plots to a larger regional system to supply supermarkets.  Read more here.

Rural Action Confronts Food Deserts in Rural Ohio   

In rural Ohio food deserts, Rural Action uses a variety of strategies to bring produce -- including local produce -- into grocery stores. WOUB News reports here.


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