Newsletter header
In This Issue
Webinar: Education as a Value-Added Product June 11
Kentucky Advanced Grazing School June 18
Webinar: Grow your Co-Op and Empower Staff through Community Development June 20
Conservation Stewardship Program Deadline Extended to June 14
Appalachian Community Fund Appalachian Hero Awards Deadline June 14
Peter F. Drucker Award for Nonprofit Innovation Deadline July 1
Charleston Area Alliance GROW Initiative Deadline July 1
Rural Cooperative Development Grant Program Deadline July 15
Pollination Project Seed Grants for Social Entrepreneurs
ATTRA's Sustainable Producer Spotlight
CS Fund Food Sovereignty Program
"Creating and Hosting Events at your Agribusiness"
Federal Resources for Food, Agriculture, and Rural Data
"A Bid to Put Money Behind Slow Food Movement"

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!

Like us on Facebook


This newsletter provides a biweekly selection of news, events, resources, and ideas that are helpful to farms and food access projects 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 initiative of the West Virginia Community Development Hub.  In addition to this newsletter, we also offer updates on specific food and farm topics.  To subscribe to special updates, go here and enter your email address.






Appalachian Foodways Tour a Success 


During May 21-23, the Appalachian Regional Commission as well as officials from USDA, the U.S. Dept. of Education, several congressional offices, and the national FFA program toured West Virginia to learn about our ripening local food movement.  Stops included the Agriculture Education programs at Hampshire and Tucker High Schools, the Culinary program at Pierpont Community and Technical College, the local food system in Philippi, Morgantown Farmers Market, the Mid-Ohio Valley Growers Association and Roane County Farmers Market, and an export roundtable organized by the WV Dept. of Agriculture.  Part of the purpose of the tour was to celebrate the new Value Chain Cluster Initiative, a program assisting WV business owners with "food business development from field to fork," of which ARC is a funder.   


Local food in WV got great press out of the tour -- read the AP article in the Washington Post here, a WV Public Radio story here, and a nice story on the Philippi tour here.


The Food & Farm Coalition assisted by nominating sites for the tour, inviting press, and organizing the tour in Philippi, which showcased Heart and Hand's Community Garden Market, Tygart Valley Growers Association, the gorgeous Sickler Farm, and local procurement at Alderson Broaddus College.  We had great speakers including Tom McConnell, Bekki Leigh, Allen Arnold and Marten Jenkins.    


Earl Gohl, federal co-chair of the Appalachian Regional Commission, is now calling WV a regional leader in local food systems.  Another official said the tour was "the best time he had ever spent" and that he has a completely new view of the potential of West Virginia's agricultural economy because of the excitement he saw.  Representatives from congressional offices made similar comments.  We hope the good press will encourage our federal and state agencies to consider farmers and food businesses as serious contributors to the WV economy, and support them.


The Food & Farm Coalition is seeking an Executive Director!  '


We're excited to launch the hiring search for our new Executive Director -- a move that not only marks a new phase in the life of the Coalition, but also our transition to being an independent 501(c)3 nonprofit.  Our current Director, Savanna Lyons, will be moving on to grad school in December.  We will be sad to see her go, but grateful that the incoming E.D. will be able to to work with Savanna for several months before assuming leadership. 


Do you know someone who is willing to work hard, think outside the box, be an advocate for farmers and consumers, and build partnerships outside of traditional "silos" in order to promote West Virginia food and agriculture?  Send them our job announcement


West Virginia Food News

WV inmates to start farming for Mountaineer Food Bank

Inmates at seven WV prisons will be growing produce this summer to donate to the Mountaineer Food Bank.  This is a Harvest Now program, which gives inmates a sense of purpose while alleviating hunger and improving health.  West Virginia's Denmar, Pruntytown, Huttonsville, Anthony, Beckley, Parkersburg and St. Marys correctional centers are participating.  The Charleston Gazette reports here.


Morgan's Grove Market starts Healthy Living Collaborative

The market, just outside of Shepherdstown, intends to facilitate a relationship between eating local and healthy living.  The Collaborative, which will be a five-building campus, will house six-day-a-week local produce market, health outreach organizations, restaurants, a private school, and more.  The Martinsburg Journal reports here


National Food News

Farm Bill News

Both the Senate and House Agriculture Committees held their respective committee "markup" sessions during the week of May 13.  Initial drafts of the 2013 Farm Bill written mainly by the Chairs and Ranking Members of each committee were presented to members and modified through several hours of debate and committee votes through the amendment process.  The National Sustainable Agriculture Coalition (NSAC) gives details here on these key amendments: Commodities and Crop Insurance; Conservation; Beginning, Veteran and Minority Farmers; Local Food and Rural Development; Research and Organic; and harmful amendments.


The Congressional Research Service wrote an article called "What is the Farm Bill?" last October to educate people about what the farm bill is all about.  Read it here.


USDA Publishes Country of Origin Labeling Final Rule

On Thursday, May 23, the USDA published the final rule amending the Country of Origin Labeling (COOL) regulations in the Federal Register.  COOL was originally enacted in the 2002 Farm Bill and required retailers to notify customers of the country of origin of covered commodities.  USDA made changes to the labeling provisions for muscle cut covered commodities, requiring specification of where the product was born, raised, and slaughtered, including separate specifications in cases where the animal resided in two or more countries during its lifetime.  NSAC reports here

Upcoming Events in and near West Virginia
Do you have events that you want included in our newsletter?
 Please contact us ! 
Webinar:  Education as a Value-Added Product

 Tuesday, June 11, 2013 12-1pm



In this Farminar following a field day, Claire Orner will describe how she and her husband, Rusty, have turned Quiet Creek Herb Farm & School of Country Living into an educational non-profit where they focus on teaching stewardship of the land, the person, and sustainable practices.  Claire will review how she schedules events, funding sources, marketing strategies, support opportunities, ownership, and collaboration, and inquiry.  Hosted by Penn State College of Agricultural Sciences.  Learn more here

Kentucky Advanced Grazing School

 Tuesday, June 18, 2013

University of Kentucky Research and Education Center

Princeton, KY


The second advanced grazing school is scheduled for June 18, 2013 at the University of Kentucky Research and Education Center in Princeton, KY.  This one day program will reexamine important concepts and demonstrate grazing principles for managing both pastures and livestock.  Specialists from the University of Kentucky will present useful information and findings from recent research.  Demonstrations and hands on activities will be part of this program to increase participants' knowledge and understanding of proper grazing management.  Learn more here

Webinar: Grow your Co-Op & Empower Staff Through Community Development

 Thursday, June 20, 2013 2-3pm



This webinar will change the way your staff use the cooperative principles to serve members, improve their own lives, contribute to the community, and grow the cooperative.  Get an introduction to community development and how it relates to member service, the growth of the cooperative and cooperative partnership.  Attendees will also learn about available specialized training, and how to get access to millions of dollars in grants and below market rate loans for their co-op.  Learn more here

(grants, awards, partnership ideas)

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

To use this calendar, scroll ahead to see what grant deadlines are coming up.  Also look back to see what grants came out last year, so you can anticipate the same grants coming out in the year ahead. 

Conservation Stewardship Program Deadline Extended
New Deadline:  June 14, 2013  

On May 28, USDA/NRCS extended the deadline for the filing of the initial application form to participate in the Conservation Stewardship Program for 2013.  The new deadline is June 14, 2013.  The National Sustainable Agriculture Committee reports here.

Appalachian Community Fund Appalachian Hero Awards
Deadline:  June 14, 2013

The Appalachian Community Fund is proud to call for nominations for the 2013-2014 Appalachian Hero Awards!  The Appalachian Hero Award is presented to an individual or organization in the region who has made a substantial contribution to the social justice movement in Central Appalachia on our Journey toward Justice.  Every year, an Appalachian Hero will be selected from each of the following areas; East Tennessee, Eastern Kentucky, Southwest Virginia and West Virginia, in addition to a National Appalachian Hero who lives outside of the region.  Learn more here.

Peter F. Drucker Award for Nonprofit Innovation
Deadline:  July 1, 2013

The Peter F. Drucker Award for Nonprofit Innovation is given each fall to a nonprofit organization that best demonstrates Drucker's definition of innovation:  "change that creates a new dimension of performance."  The award has been given annually since 1991 and is accompanied by a first-place prize of $100,000.  Learn more here

Charleston Area Alliance GROW Initiative
Deadline:  July 1, 2013

The Charleston Area Alliance will plant the seeds of success for up to 20 budding area businesses through GROW, an initiative designed to foster entrepreneurship in the Kanawha Valley.  The program offers educational training, individual coaching and peer feedback to Kanawha Valley entrepreneurs, who have been in business for less than three years, have less than five employees and who seek to expand their network and gain insight from experienced and successful area business people.  Learn more here

Rural Cooperative Development Grant (RCDG) Program
Deadline:  July 15, 2013  

USDA has announced the availability of grants through the Rural Cooperative Development Grant (RCDG) Program for Fiscal Year (FY) 2013.  Nonprofit corporations and institutions of higher education may apply.  Approximately $6.5 million is available.  Applications are limited to one per applicant for a maximum of $200,000 and matching funds are required.  The primary objective of the RCDG program is to improve the economic condition of rural areas through cooperative development.  Grant funds may be used to pay for 75 percent of the cost of establishing and operating centers for rural cooperative development.  Learn more here

Pollination Project Seed Grants for Social Entrepreneurs
Deadline:  Open  

The Pollination Project is accepting applications from individuals working to make their community and the world a better place in the areas of arts and culture, community health and wellness, the environment, and justice.  Seed grants of up to $1,000 will be awarded to social entrepreneurs for projects in the early stages of development, including those that promote compassion toward all life (people, planet, animals), environmental sustainability, justice in all its forms, community health and wellness, and social change-oriented arts and culture.  Learn more here

ATTRA's Sustainable Producer Spotlight
Deadline:  Open 

Want to spotlight your sustainable agriculture operation in ATTRA's Sustainable Producer Spotlight?  The Spotlight is offered as a celebration of those who practice sustainable and organic agriculture.  We'd love to see West Virginia farms on this list!  Learn more here

CS Fund Food Sovereignty Program
Deadline:  Open 

CSF and WML's Food Sovereignty program area is grounded in traditional agricultural knowledge and agroecological practices.  The foundations' grantmaking focuses on three cornerstones of agrobiodiversity and food system resilience: preserving native and heirloom seeds, building healthy and fertile soils, and protecting and restoring the populations and diversity of native pollinators.  The foundation is currently reducing its grantmaking, and their ability to entertain new proposals is limited during this time.  Requests should be made by letters of inquiry, which are accepted throughout the year and will be acknowledged as soon as possible.  Learn more here

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

"Creating and Hosting Events at your Agribusiness"


This article gives tips on deciding when to host an event, making sure your property is suitable, and inviting complementary vendors and entertainment.  It gives an event checklist and advice on evaluating the event's success.  The article was written by Kathleen M. Kelley, Penn State Professor of Horticultural Marketing and Business.  Read the article here.

Federal Resources for Food, Agriculture, and Rural Data


This site is a centralized federal resource for food, agriculture, and rural data.  It includes hundreds of government datasets that can help enable research, tools and decision making to improve food security.  It also includes tools for app developers adn events and opportunities to learn more about food, agriculture, and rural data and issues.  Explore the data resources here.

"A Bid to Put Money Behind Slow Food Movement"


Woody Tasch, the chairman emeritus of the Investors' Circle, a nonprofit network of angel investors, venture capitalists and foundations, established Slow Money on the heels of his 2008 book "Inquiries Into the Nature of Slow Money: Investing as if Food, Farms, and Fertility Mattered."  Inspired in part by the slow food movement led by the Italian Carlo Petrini, Mr. Tasch envisioned his own movement as an antidote to big agriculture.  Since 2010 Slow Money has helped to funnel $25 million into nearly 200 food enterprises, with 16 domestic chapters and one in France, six investment clubs and Gatheround, a new crowd-funding platform.  NY Times reports here

This is YOUR space, YOUR newsletter and YOUR Coalition. If you have suggestions, announcements or resources you would like to share please contact us.
If you received this email from someone else, and would like to subscribe to the West Virginia Food & Farm Coalition Newsletter, please visit this link to sign up.