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January 2015

  


 

Greetings, and Happy New Year!


 

I hope everyone had a wonderful holiday season!  And more snow than we had in Soldotna......almost didn't have a white Christmas!


 

How many Alaska Grown items did you serve for your Christmas dinner?


 

December and January have our President, Bryce Wrigley, off at American Farm Bureau meetings.  He attended the Resolutions Committee meetings in Washington, D.C. last month.  It was a grueling two days packed with reviewing proposed policy changes.  He was able to visit with Robin Kinney briefly and Kyle Perry, who will be assisting the Board of Directors in developing a long range plan for agriculture in Alaska and a strategic plan for the Alaska Farm Bureau.


 

Bryce will be attending the 96th Annual American Farm Bureau Convention in San Diego mid-month.  We'll look forward to hearing how that went in next month's newsletter!   


 

We were close to reaching our 2014 membership quota as a state - let's make that a goal for 2015!  We are off to a good start with the help of Robert Gibson, one of our new Directors.  He's already signed up close to 20 new members!


 

We are in the final stages of securing Verizon Wireless as a new benefit for Alaska Farm Bureau members: stay tuned for information on what those benefits will be.


 

Remember, we're always looking for more pictures for the website and Facebook! 

 


Amy Seitz, Executive Director


Alaska Farm Bureau

37075 Nicholas View Lane

Soldotna, AK 99669 

907-252-5064 

Amy.Seitz@gmail.com 

 


 

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 me 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 


 

 

 

THE POLITICAL SCENE

 

Our Legislators are packing up their district offices and heading back to Juneau for another session of debating legislation and forming our state's budget.  The 2015 session starts on January 20th. 

 

There is a lot of information available on the Legislature's website: contact information, procedure information, etc.  You can track bill movement and even watch committee meetings live.  Visit www.legis.state.ak.us

 

With a new Governor in office we're seeing changes at the administrative level; new commissioners, assistant commissioners, directors, etc.  Information is available on the Governor, Lieutenant Governor, and their administration at www.alaska.gov.

 

We'll start hearing soon about Bills of interest. So stay tuned....


 

ACTIONS FROM THE BOARD

  • The Board of Directors instituted a new grant program for educating youth on Alaskan agriculture.  The program is the Small Agricultural Education Grant.  The board will be finalizing policy for this grant program at their February board meeting. 
  • We'll be having a professional brochure designed and printed for new member recruitment.  That will be coming out early this year.
  • With help from the American Farm Bureau Federation, the board will begin drafting a Long Range Plan for agriculture in Alaska and Strategic Plan for the Alaska Farm Bureau.

 

COMMITTEE APPOINTMENTS


Internal Audit Committee:

     -Rita Jo Shoultz and Charlie Knight

 

Small Agricultural Education Grant Committee:

     -Scott Mugrage, Gerald Marlow, Arthur Keyes, Jane Conway and Don Berberich

 

Membership Committee:

     -Robert Gibson, Chair

     -Lorne White, Gerald Marlow, and Arthur Keyes

 

Bruce Willard Scholarship Committee:

     -Lorne White, Chair

     -Alex Davis and Charlie Knight

 

Livestock Industry Committee:

     -Scott Mugrage, Chair

     -Jerry Marlow, Pat Mulligan, Mark Marette, Chris Flickinger, Marlene Wenger, Robert Gibson

 

Energy Committee:

     -Jeff Werner, Chair

     -Bernie Karl and Rex Wrigley 

 


 

TAKE ADVANTAGE OF YOUR MEMBERSHIP BENEFITS

View a list of all the member benefits at http://www.alaskafb.org/join/membership-benefits/

  

 


 

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. 


 

GRANT RECEIVED FOR PEST MANAGEMENT

UAF Cooperative Extension Service needs your input!!

 

The UAF Cooperative Extension Service recently received a grant from the National Institute of Food and Agriculture in their Crop Protection and Pest Management program.  The grant funds four part-time pest scouts in Kenai, Palmer, Fairbanks, and Delta Junction, who will be tasked with the goal of visiting every farm and ranch in Alaska over the next three summers.  During these visits they will scout fields, pastures and animals for pests, they will teach the owners how they do this, and provide information on how to report anything new that the owner may find in the future.

 

To train these scouts, the UAF Cooperative Extension Service needs to find out what the most important weeds, diseases and insects in your area of the state are. 

 

They would like anyone who grows crops, raises animals for food, or anyone who is in an agency that works with farmers and ranchers to participate in a statewide survey.  This survey will let them know your main pest concerns and help tailor the first year of outreach.  The survey is straightforward, does not take much time, and will provide important information to prioritize their pest management training efforts.

 

The survey can be accessed at: http://bit.ly/akfarmpests

 

For more information you can contact Darcy Etcheverry by email, ddetcheverry@alaska.edu or by phone, 907-474-2422.

 


 

AMERICORP VISTA POSITIONS

 

The State of Alaska is recruiting for two Americorp VISTA positions.

 

The Alaska Food Policy Council VISTA will conduct outreach, coalition development, grant writing and fundraising to further the structure and sustainability of the Alaska Food Policy Council, a non-profit group working to strengthen the food system for the benefit of all Alaskans.  This is a one-year position located with the Alaska Department of Health and Social Services in Anchorage.  For more information and to apply for this position visit:

 

 

 The Alaska Farmers Market-Quest Card Program (AFMQP) provides funding and assistance to farmers' markets and farm stands to help them accept Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) electronic benefits transfer (EBT) cards.  

 

This VISTA position will serve as the AFMQP Coordinator and work to further develop the structure and sustainability of the program.  This is a one-year position located with the State of Alaska Division of Agriculture in Palmer.  For more information and to apply for this position, visit:

https://my.americorps.gov/mp/listing/viewListing.do?id=53159&fromSearch=true

 

Applications will be accepted until February 1, 2015.  The positions will start in April.

 

AmeriCorp VISTA benefits include: monthly living allowance ($1,222), relocation costs ($0.34/mile up to $1000) and settling in allowance ($550), health benefits, child care assistance, training and an Education Award ($5,730).


 

Wendy Kenney, AKFB Webmaster

TOP 5 REASONS YOU NEED A NEW WEBSITE

  1. If your website does not generate new customers for you on a daily basis, you need a new website!
  2. If your website is not "responsive" (meaning smart phone and tablet friendly) you definitely need a new website.
  3. If your website takes a long time to load on Google, you need a new website.
  4. If your website can only be updated by someone that you last spoke to 5 years ago, you need a new website.
  5. If you made your website yourself in 1992 using any do it yourself web technology, you need a new website.

Here's what other people are saying about the website design services provided by Wendy Kenney and 23 Kazoos.


 

"We are so happy with our new website created by 23 Kazoos! In just a few days, it began to generate new appointments for our auto repair shop! 30 days after our website was launched and because of the SEO efforts of 23Kazoos, our website gained 96 top rankings in Google for our chosen keywords!"  - Steve Yacovone, Owner, Sun Valley Imports, Tempe, Arizona


 

Alaska Farm Bureau members get 20% off new websites plus a FREE LOGO ($300 value)!!


 

Contact Wendy Now!

 

 


   


 
AKFB CLASSIFIED ADS

 

 

Adorable Pug Puppies:  These puppies are sweet and will make a loyal and true friend.  They have been well bred and will grow up to be beautiful babies.  All are vet check, wormed and will have their vaccinations before heading to their new homes.  Text Maria at 802-347-4497.  Located in Bethel, AK.

 

 

100% Alaska Grown Wine:  Alaska Berries, located near Soldotna, is the first and only Estate winery in Alaska.  An estate winery is on that grows ALL of its fruit used in its wine.  Our business hours are Wed - Sun from 2:00 to 7:00pm.  Come visit our tasting room and sample our wines before you buy.  At this time we are not shipping wine. Contact Brian Olson, 907-252-8511.

 

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.



 
UPCOMING EVENTS 

 

January 7th: 9:00-10:00am: Free small meat processors' webinar.  Log in as a guest 5-10 minutes before start time. https://connect.extension.iastate.edu/nichemeat 

 

January 13-14 - Farm to School conference.  Anchorage Marriot

 

January 15th:  Fairbanks Chapter meeting  7:00pm

 

January 22nd:   Delta Chapter meeting  7:00pm

 

February 4th:  Kenai Chapter meeting  6:30 potluck, 7:00 meeting

 

February 10th, 7:00-9:00pm:  "Small Acreage, Big Vision: How I Grew My Farm & Market Business" by Arthur Keyes of Palmer.  Central Peninsula Garden Club meeting @ Cook Inlet Aquaculture bldg. Kenai

 

February 11th, 9:00am-4:00pm: Farmers Market Roundtable @ Cook Inlet Aquaculture bldg., Kenai

 

March 3rd & 4th:  SARE Conference: Westmark Fairbanks Hotel and Conference Center

 

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!