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December 2014


If you haven't heard.....after dedicating the past 12 years to the Alaska Farm Bureau, Jane Hamilton has retired as the Executive Director. 


THANK YOU, JANE HAMILTON!  We appreciate everything you have done, and wish you a happy and healthy retirement! 


Of course we do expect to see her at Farm Bureau meetings when she's not outside lovin' up the grandkids! 


I am looking forward to working with all of you in my capacity as the new Executive Director. Please keep us updated on what's going on with your operations or events in your area so we can get the word out.  And we love to get photos to share in the newsletter, on Facebook, and on our website!


Amy Seitz, Executive Director

Alaska Farm Bureau

37075 Nicholas View Lane

Soldotna, AK 99669 





PS. Remember, we have started a new membership year.  If you have not renewed already you can do so on our website, www.alaskafb.org, by sending in a membership form, or calling Amy at 907-252-5064.  Renew now to take advantage of the member benefits and to support Alaska agriculture!



Life is Short - Eat Good Food - 


The Best Is Always Alaska Grown 




Wonderful Weather in Homer


Thank you to everyone who attended the Friday Forum and Annual Meeting in Homer in November!  We had great presentations from some of our local producers and state agencies, and a fun time networking with everyone! 


Some highlights from the weekend:

  • Rita Jo Shoultz of Alaska Perfect Peony, talked about her many opportunities to get the word out about Alaska Grown and American Grown - including a trip to the White House!  Her philosophy for getting out there......"Never say NO!"  When asked to give a presentation, be interviewed, attend an event, Rita Jo says "Never say No!"
  • Robin Kinney of the American Farm Bureau Federation gave a very energizing presentation on Farm Bureau Proud.  Hearing her speak really generated a sense of pride about being a Farm Bureau member.  Hopefully everyone is motivated to increase membership this year! 
  • Chapter Presidents, Rita Jo Shoultz (Kenai Peninsula) and Don Berberich (Mat-Su) were awarded very nice fleece jackets for meeting their membership quotas.  Congratulations to both of you!
  • Bryce Wrigley, of Delta Junction, was elected to serve his eighth year as the Alaska Farm Bureau President.
  • Lorne White of Kodiak was elected as the new Alaska Farm Bureau Vice-President. Lorne and wife Elana founded, and have worked Strawberry Fields Nursery in Kodiak since 1976.
  • Bryce brought our attention to an issue that should be of utmost concern to all of us.  EPA's Waters of the U.S. proposal.  If put into effect this could be devastating to farms.  Visit http://ditchtherule.fb.org/ for more information.

The 2015 annual meeting will be held in the Mat-Su Chapter's stomping grounds.


We hope to see you next year!  


ARRC - Lending to Farmers Is Our Business


Line of Credit loans for all farm-operating costs. (3 years) Chattel loans for equipment new or used (5 years on used 7 years on new). 

Real Estate loans for purchase or improvements to land (up to 20 years.)


All loans are 5 to 9 percent interest depending on credit and collateral.  Call Steve at 907-745-3390 or email at steve@arrc.us. 


Honoring and Remembering Bruce Willard


Bruce Willard has always been a strong supporter of Alaska agriculture and involved in the Alaska Farm Bureau since inception.  To honor Bruce's contributions, the Board of Directors named the Farm Bureau's annual scholarship given to students looking for a career in agriculture or natural resources the

"Bruce Willard Scholarship Fund." 


This year, between the scholarship auction and donations given in memory of Bruce, the scholarship fund has received a record $7,930.50! 


Thank You, Linda Willard, for your wonderful generosity!!! College students or graduating high school seniors can apply for a grant by April 1st of each year.







Chapter Grants Double


The Board of Directors voted to increase the maximum amount for chapter grants to $2000.00.  With the budget looking good, board members decided to bump up the chapter grants to the amount funded prior to 2009.

Each chapter is able to apply for these funds in March, with an April 1st deadline.  The funds are used to promote the Alaska Farm Bureau, enhance membership, or promote Alaska agriculture.


Chapters have used these grants to do some wonderful things, like: purchasing signs to display at events for more visibility, an egg incubator to use in educating students or community members, and buying popular pamphlets to hand out with their Farm Bureau chapter name on them. 


Looking forward to seeing what the creative use of the chapter grants will be in 2015!


RTCP Deadline Extension


For those of you who turned in an application for the Reimbursement Transportation Cost Payment Program and have not yet submitted supporting documents, you still have a chance!  The deadline has been extended to December 17, 2014.  The sooner you get them in, the better.  


You can find more information at www.fsa.usda.gov/ak, or by contacting Erin Sturdivant in the FSA office at 907-761-7754 or via email erin.sturdivant@ak.usda.gov



This Just In!


The Alaska Farmland Trust Corp. and state fair board recently closed a deal that will place a conservation easement on 40 acres of hayfields owned by the Alaska State Fair.  This effort has been ongoing for some time now and this successful conclusion is a positive stride for preserving agricultural land in Alaska.  Congratulations!


Read more about this on our website: Alaska Farmland Trust



Announcing the Winners of the 

Alaska Farm Bureau Photo Contest!! 


Farm Animals
           "Blonde Beef" by Julia Mugrage 
Country Children
Stop and Smell the Dandelions" by Julia Mugrage


Farm Scenery
   "Peony Bouquet" by Rita Jo Shoultz 


People's Choice
"Pockets" by Julia Mugrage 




Photo Credit: AWCC , Alaskawildlife.org



Reindeer Needed for 4-H Program:  The Alaska Wildlife Conservation Center is building a new herd of reindeer for a 4-H reindeer husbandry program.  In the winter months, 4-H students will stay in the wildlife center's bunkhouses learning all aspects of reindeer husbandry and wildlife husbandry. 


Students will be sourced from the Kenai Peninsula, Prince William Sound Villages, Anchorage and Mat-Su Valley.  Spring calves will all be bottle fed by the students.  Each student will then stay at the center for 2 weeks during the summer.  An approved enclosure will be built at the student's home.  In the fall, the student will take their reindeer calf or calves home and continue their 4-H project.


There is no cost to the student for this program and the calf is donated to them.  The University of Fairbanks, School of Natural Resources and Agriculture Science has had great success with this program in Fairbanks.  We hope to do the same in our area.


We gathered a few reindeer from breeders along the road system, but we could use more as we have more applicants than animals.  We ask reindeer breeders to consider a tax-deductible donation.  The value of the reindeer plus the transportation expense would be 100% tax deductible.  AWCC's CPA would create the necessary paperwork for IRS. 


Mike Miller, Executive Director Alaska Wildlife Conservation Center (AWCC) PO Box 949, Mile 79 Seward Highway, Portage, AK 99587. Phone 907-301-7942. 


Fairbanks Farm For Sale:  Arctic Roots Farm, Bed and Breakfast at 1293 Esro Road, off Chena Hot Springs Road.  The parcel includes 25 acres of brome grass, 30 acres of birch forest, a 1-acre moose-proof orchard/garden, a 20'x 48' high tunnel and a 20' x 48 greenhouse with drip irrigation.  There are 3 homes - a farmhouse and two modern homes which are used as an agra-tourism bed and breakfast, a large shop with a heated utility room, a large barn with sheep handling corrals, a chicken coop, root cellar, and 30 acres with a 5' stock fence.  Contact owner Chris DuBois at 907-750-1514 for more information.  It is listed with Joe Russo at Russo Reality.  Joe can be reached at 907-460-8555.


Rams for Sale:  Black Welch Mountain rams.  Very gentle.  $300 each.  Nancy Davidian and Chris DuBois, Arctic Roots Farm.  Contact them at 907-750-1514.


Land For Sale:  70 acres in Salcha.  It has Richardson Highway frontage and is near Milepost 315.  There is a small stream on the property.  $42,000.  Contact Ann Geise at 907-895-4466.


Locally Grown Food Wanted: The Center for Alaskan Coastal Studies hosts a number of camps and overnight programs at our Peterson Bay Field Station throughout the course of the summer. We provide meals for participants during the programs and would like to source more of our food locally and sustainably. The Center is a 501 (c) (3) environmental education organization in Homer. It was established in 1982. E-mail Melanie@akcoastalstudies.org for more information. Telephone: 907-235-6667.  


Vendors for Center Market Wanted:  The Center Market at The Mall at Sears in Anchorage is looking for vendors with unique Alaska Grown or produced products.  The Center Market is a year round, indoor farmers market.  We are looking for vendors to join us on Wednesdays for this spring.  We will start our Saturday market in August.  For more information, e-mail Alex Davis at adfarmorganic@gmail.com.


For Sale:  2008 Dodge 3500 Pickup.  4 door crew cab, 6.7 l inline diesel engine, turbo charger, duel rear wheels.  Black with Leer Topper.  5th wheel attachment, 6-speed automatic.  Excellent condition with all the bells and whistles. Super chip included.  151,000 miles.  Please call Jeannie Pinkelman in Delta Junction at 907-895-4006 or 895-4594.


Farm for Sale in North Pole:  A 9 acre farm/tourism lodge at 2100 Nelson Road in North Pole.  See photos at Stars and Stripes or Madden real estate sites.  A 20'x 40' attached, insulated greenhouse, fully landscaped grounds, tree nursery, large vegetable garden (only natural fertilizers used), pasture, woods in blueberries and cranberries.  There is a 2-story log lodge, Greatland triple-pane windows, stainless commercial kitchen, 2-bed, three bath, covered porches, and gazebo.  Good well water.  $299,000.  Two additional acres with airstrip access available.  Website:  chenalakesfarm.com.  Contact Tracy Pulido at info@chenalakesfarm.com.


40 Acres for Sale in North Pole:  Gorgeous parcel that is a mix of large spruce, birch, willow and grassland.  East borders Chena Lake Recreation Area at the end of Repp Road in North Pole.  Great spot for farm, rural estate or hunting/fishing aurora-viewing lodge.  Can be subdivided into 5-acre lots.  Short walk to river or lake.  Road access, power about mile away.  Very private, but easy access to town.  Owner financing is available.  $99.000 OBO.  Contact Tracey Pulido at info@chenalakesfarm.com.  See photos on Fairbanks Craigslist.


Classified Ads ARE FREE to Alaska Farm Bureau Members.  Submit your ad online or send to Executive Director Amy Seitz, amy.seitz@gmail.com or by calling 907-252-5064.




December 3rd - SARE Grand Deadline:  Alaska producers may apply for five grant opportunities.  Detailed descriptions visit:  www.westernsare.org/Grants/Types-of-Grants or contact Steven Seefeldt, Western SARE coordinator for Alaska at ssseefeldt@alaska.edu or call him at 907-474-2423.


December  4 - Video Conference Class Record Keeping & Taxes for Mining - 12:30-2:30 cost $25 - info or questions Kathryn Dodge 907-474-6497 or kdodge@alaska.edu


December 17: RTCP supporting documents deadline.  Turn in to the local FSA office.


April 2nd - 3rd, 2015: Southeast Farm & Fish To School Conference:  In Juneau.  Travel scholarships will be available.  For more information, e-mail:  growsoutheast@gmail.com.


May 5 - Alaska Agriculture Day - start planning NOW to celebrate!




Need a Website?


Special Offer Just For Members of Alaska Farm Bureau


Starter Websites regularly $1250 now only $699!!



  • Custom Designed Wordpress Site
  • Up to 5 pages including Home, About, Services or Products, Location, Contact (or any 5 pages you choose)
  • Blog
  • Responsive website (as recommended by Google) automatically adjusts for best viewing on computers, tablets or smartphones
  • Ability to add unlimited pages yourself
  • Ability to add content or photos 
  • Initial search engine optimization and submission to Google
  • Training provided on how to manage your site 
  • You own the site forever
You provide your own images and content. You will also need to pay for hosting. I recommend Hostgator which costs about $48 a year. 

This is for new websites only, not an upgrade of existing sites.  For an upgrade, please contact for quote. Not valid for websites requiring online shopping. 

Not valid with any other discounts.

Expires December 31, 2014.

Wendy Kenney
Webmaster for Alaska Farm Bureau



Member Benefits


Members of the Alaska Farm Bureau receive MANY great benefits, just for being a member!   

  • Polaris Utility Vehicles:  $200-300 discounts on Polaris full sized Utility & Sport (UTV), All-Terrain (ATV) and GEM Electric Vehicles.  Print your discount certificate at www.fbverify.com/polaris. (Does not apply to youth models.)
  • Office Depot:  Up to 80% off preferred products.  Free Shipping to Alaska on orders over $50.00.  Your Office Depot link is:  http://akfb.ctcshares.com
  • COUNTRY Financial:  Offering ID Theft, Home, Auto, Life policies and Financial Planning.  Farm policies are sold only to Alaska Farm Bureau Members.  Contact your local COUNTRY Financial agent.
  • Choice Hotels:  Up to 20% off when you stay at any Comfort Inn, Quality, Clarion, Roadway Inn, Econo Lodge, Mainstay Suites, and Suburban hotels.  Must use their www.choicehotels.com website or call 1-800-258-2847.  Discount code:00228830.
  • Grainger:  10-50% discounts on merchandise purchased online and at the Anchorage store.  Free shipping on merchandise sent to Alaska that is ordered on-line at www.Grainger.com.  Your account must be set up with them as a Farm Bureau member.
  • GM Discount:  $500 discount on all GMC, Chevrolet and Buick new cars and trucks.  All vehicles are eligible for the discount except the Chevrolet Volt and Cadillac. Must be a member for 30 days.  You print your own discount certificate before going to the dealership. Print your certificate at www.fbverify.com/gm. (Enter your membership number without the dash or hyphen.)
  • Prescription Drug Program:  Discounts for you, your family and your employees.  There are no enrollment forms, no claim forms.  There are 50 participating pharmacies in Alaska including Wal-Mart, Sam's Club, Fred Meyer, Safeway and drug stores around the state.  Discounts for those with and without insurance.  Request your discount cards as well as a complete list of drug and pharmacies from the Alaska Farm Bureau Office at 907-252-5064 or amy.seitz@gmail.com.
  • NAPA Discount:  10% discount at all NAPA stores in Alaska, except for those in Tok, Kodiak and Southeast who are not participating in this program.  For Fairbanks and Delta, use code 0495. Elsewhere in the state use code 3276.
  • Farm Bureau Bank:  Significant savings on all business and personal financial needs-credit cards; deposit accounts including money market savings and IRA's; vehicle, student, home loans and much more at www.farmbureaubank.com.
  • AVIS Car Rental:  Discounts on vehicles rented both inside and outside of Alaska at participating rental offices.  Use AVIS Code A298802.
  • CASE-IH:  $300-500 discounts on equipment purchased at CASE-IH dealerships in Anchorage, Fairbanks as well as in the Lower 48.  Print your discount certificate at www.fbadvantage.com/deals/case.