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Greetings!

 

I hope everyone had a happy and safe 4th of July!

Please take the time to read through the newsletter.  We have some important dates to remember and events coming up.

 

As the Governor is already looking at next year's budget cycle being full of more cuts, he is asking for Alaskans to get involved in the discussions.  

 

The budget conference that took place in Fairbanks was an eye-opener.  Not only do we in the ag industry need to be more involved, but we need our customers, those who support local products, to get involved and share that agriculture in Alaska is important.  For more information on joining the discussions email sustainable.future@alaska.gov.

 

 


Amy Seitz, Executive Director


Alaska Farm Bureau

37075 Nicholas View Lane

Soldotna, AK 99669 

907-252-5064 

Amy.Seitz@gmail.com  

 


 


  


 

 

EARN A FREE STAY AT THE CROWNE PLAZA!

 

If you enroll five (5) new members in a membership year (November 1-October 31), you'll earn travel and two nights lodging to the Alaska Farm Bureau's Friday Forum and Annual meeting November 13th and 14th!  Just make sure your name is on their membership application to receive credit.  

 

 

 

SAVE THE DATE

 

SAVE THESE DATES!  Be sure and mark your calendars for the 2015 Friday Forum and Annual Meeting.

 

 

Friday,  November 13th, 2015

 

Friday Forum Conference

Awards Banquet and Scholarship Auction

 

 

November 14th, 2015

 

Annual Meeting

 

Meetings will be held at the Crowne Plaza in Anchorage this year.  

 

To reserve a room go to http://bit.ly/alaskafarmbureauancpaYou can also call the hotel directly at 907-433-4100 or 1-800-593-5447.  Be sure and mention you're with the Alaska Farm Bureau block if you book by phone.

 

 

 



 

STATE VETERINARIAN WEBSITE

Dr. Robert Gerlach

 

If you don't already use the website for the state veterinarian, it's a great resource for information from animal health, to import regulations for animals. 

 

You'll find information on the avian influenza outbreak: how to protect your flock, when to report sick birds and other information on the virus. 

 

Do you have a plan for your livestock should disaster strike?  In the state vet's newsletter you can get some ideas on setting up an evacuation plan for your livestock.

 

Be sure and use the State Veterinarian's website as a resource: http://dec.alaska.gov/eh/vet/index.htm

 

 

 

 




 


 

CALLING ALL EDUCATORS!

 

Alaska AITC Educator Institute 2015

 

Alaska Ag in the Classroom (AITC) Educator Institute 2015 is scheduled for July 28th - July 31st, 8:00am to 5:00pm.  Here is the flyer for more information. 

 

This is an introduction course to the many resources available through the Alaska AITC program.  You'll have a variety of curricula presented as well as some hands-on opportunities with field trips! 

 

This course will be held at the Matanuska Experiment Farm and Spring Creek Farm in Palmer, AK.  If you're an educator and are interested in taking part in this course you can register online here or email fairbanksswcd@gmail.com for a registration form.  All educators who are doing agriculture related lessons are welcome; 4-H, FFA, scout leaders, teachers, etc. 


 

American Farm Bureau, Agriculture and Industry Groups Ask Court to Ditch EPA's Unlawful Water Rule


 

WASHINGTON, D.C., July 2, 2015 - The American Farm Bureau Federation, Texas Farm Bureau, Matagorda County Farm Bureau, and 11 other agricultural and industry groups today asked a federal court to vacate the controversial new rule redefining the scope of federal jurisdiction under the Clean Water Act. 


 

The complaint, filed in federal district court in Texas, claims the new rule grants EPA and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers broad control over land use far beyond what Congress authorized in the Clean Water Act. The lawsuit also claims vagueness and over-breadth of the rule violate the U.S. Constitution. The groups also challenged EPA's aggressive grassroots advocacy campaign during the comment period, which reflected a closed mind to concerns expressed by farmers and others.


 

EPA and the Corps first proposed the rule in March 2014, promising clarity and certainty to farmers, ranchers, builders and other affected businesses and landowners. "Instead we have a final rule that exceeds the agencies' legal authority and fails to provide the clarity that was promised," AFBF General Counsel Ellen Steen said. "AFBF filed this lawsuit to do everything we can to protect the interests of farmers and ranchers, but litigation is not a quick or perfect fix. It is long, cumbersome and expensive, and it leaves farmers and others facing immediate harm and uncertainty under this rule."


 

While AFBF and others turn to the courts, a bill currently before the Senate, if passed, would require EPA and the Corps to abandon the rule and conduct a new rulemaking.


 

"Lawsuit or no lawsuit, we need Congress to act," AFBF President Bob Stallman said. "We need legislation that requires an honest rulemaking from EPA. EPA water regulations must protect water quality without bulldozing the rights of farmers and others whose livelihoods depend on their ability to work the land."


 

According to the AFBF complaint, "the Agencies are determined to exert jurisdiction over a staggering range of dry land and water features - whether large or small, permanent, intermittent or ephemeral, flowing or stagnant, natural or manmade, interstate or intrastate." The "opaque and unwieldy" rule "leaves the identification of jurisdictional waters so vague and uncertain that Plaintiffs and their members cannot determine whether and when the most basic activities undertaken on their land will subject them to drastic criminal and civil penalties under the (Clean Water Act)."


 

The AFBF lawsuit follows four similar suits filed by officials representing 27 states, all within two days of the rule's publication on June 29. A group of nine states - West Virginia, Georgia, Alabama, Florida, Kansas, Kentucky, South Carolina, Utah and Wisconsin - has asked a federal district court in Georgia for a preliminary injunction to stop implementation of the rule while the lawsuit is resolved. Ohio and Michigan have a separate suit in Ohio also seeking preliminary relief. "We appreciate the leadership and dedication of all the states that have challenged the rule, and we fully support their efforts," Steen said.


 

AFBF's co-plaintiffs are the American Petroleum Institute, American Road and Transportation Builders, Leading Builders of America, National Alliance of Forest Owners, National Association of Home Builders, National Association of Manufacturers, National Cattlemen's Beef Association, National Corn Growers Association, National Mining Association, National Pork Producers Council and Public Lands Council.

 Follow this link for a copy of the complaint.

 


Contacts:

 

Will Rodger
(202) 406-3642
willr@fb.org

 

Mace Thornton
(202) 406-3641
macet@fb.org


 

 

 



 

CLASSIFIED ADS

 

 

We Buy Berries:  Bear Creek Winery is family owned and operated and we are a farm to table operation. Our award winning wines are so popular that we cannot grow enough berries to keep up with demand, so we also buy berries from local farmers. 

 

Please keep us in mind if you are thinking of growing or need a buyer for any of the following crops: Raspberries, Black Currants, Gooseberries, Strawberries, Apples, and Blueberries. Contact Louis at 907-235-8484

 

Visit website: BearCreekWinery 

 

Land For Sale North Side of Chena River: 468 acres of beautiful agricultural land along the north side of the Chena River between Peede Road and the Flood Control Dam out of North Pole, Alaska.  

 

Dense birch stands make this the perfect place for agricultural production related to birch sap products. Land is approved for minimal clearing requirements (only 25 acres) to gain title, with no timeline since access is currently by good trail or river only. Priced to sell at $160,000. For more information, call Tom Dooley 907-539-1384.

 

Computer Repair, Networking & IT Consulting:  The goal of AK Bits and Bytes, LLC is to provide exceptional customer service, and professional results at a reasonable price. You can place your technology needs in our hands and no longer worry about them. We offer expert confidential solutions you can trust.

Thank you for allowing us the opportunity to be your technology solutions provider. If you are happy with us, send your friends, if you are not call us to make it right for you.


We repair all brands of personal computers desktop or Laptops. Hardware or software, we'll fix your computer and get it running properly. Certified Tech and fast friendly service. Call for an appointment. Available 7 days a week.  Discounts to Alaska Farm Bureau members. 
Visit website.  Contact Lisa McDonald: 907-398-3994

 

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 have 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 the 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. Email Melanie@akcoastalstudies.org for more information. Telephone: 907-235-6667.  

 

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'x40' 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.  Submit your ad online or to the newsletter editor at amy.seitz@gmail.com or by calling 907-252-5064.

 

 



 

Alaska Rural Rehabilitation Corp.

 

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

 


 

MEMBER BENEFITS


 

View all benefits here.

 

  • Alaska Farm Bureau members save up to 20% off best available rates at Choice Hotels, including Ascend, Cambria Suites, Clarion, Comfort Inn, Comfort Suites, Econo Lodge, MainStay Suites, Quality Inn, Rodeway Inn, Sleep Inn, and Suburban Extended Stay hotels.  Just use our discount code:0228830 

 

 

 

  • If you own a company, you can provide your part time employees with prescription savings with The Farm Bureau Discount Rx Card. Visit the Health Care section of www.fbadvantage.com to print your free card!
 

 




Take the $5/Week Alaska Grown Challenge! 


The Kenai Peninsula Chapter of the Alaska Farm Bureau, in partnership with the Kenai Soil and Water Conservation District and several other local organizations, launched the $5/Week Alaska Grown Challenge on May 5th, in honor of Alaska Agriculture Day.  

 

Now, with the help of social media, Farm Bureau members and local food advocates, we are taking this challenge statewide!  Go to www.alaskafb.org/challenge/ to sign up and help spread the word! 


 

Read the full press release here.


 




 

BLM SEEKS PUBLIC COMMENT


 

BLM is looking at three new herbicides to control noxious weeds on public lands


 

To expand its existing list of approved herbicide active ingredients (herbicides) to treat noxious weeds and other invasive species on Bureau of Land Management (BLM)-managed public lands, the BLM today notified the public of the availability of a draft Vegetation Treatments Programmatic Environmental Impact Statement (EIS). The draft Programmatic (region-wide) EIS evaluates the use of three new herbicides to treat vegetation on public lands in 17 Western states.  


 

The new herbicides evaluated in the Programmatic EIS are aminopyralid (known by the trade name Milestone), fluroxypyr (Vista), and rimsulfuron (Matrix).  A notice of availability of the draft Programmatic EIS, published in today's Federal Register by the Environmental Protection Agency, initiates a 45-day public comment period on the document. 


 

The Draft Programmatic EIS provides full reviews and analyzes the environmental and human impacts of the three new herbicides, which would give public land managers greater flexibility in undertaking vegetation treatments in the field.  Milestone is primarily used to control knapweeds and thistles; Vista for prickly pear and perennial broad-leaf species; and Matrix for downy brome (cheatgrass) and medusahead rye.    


 

Noxious weeds and other invasive species infest approximately 80 million acres of the more than 245 million acres of public lands under the BLM's jurisdiction.  Annually, the BLM treats about 350,000 acres using a variety of vegetation management tools, including herbicides, to control noxious weeds and other invasive species in its effort to conserve and restore native vegetation, watersheds, and fish and wildlife habitat.


 

The Draft Programmatic EIS addresses a wide range of issues, including the effect of the herbicides on the health of humans, vegetation, fish and wildlife, livestock, and wild horses and burros.  The Draft Programmatic EIS also looks at water quality and Native American use of resources, and evaluates the cumulative impact of the new and other herbicides by the BLM and other landowners in the West. 


 

The notice, titled Notice of Availability of Draft Vegetation Treatments Using Aminopyralid, Fluroxypyr, and Rimsulfuron on Bureau of Land Management Lands in 17 Western States Programmatic Environmental Impact Statement, is accessible at http://blm.gov/3vkd


 

The public comment period closes Aug. 3, 2015.  Public comments may be submitted to blm_wo_vegeis@blm.gov.


 

The BLM manages more than 245 million acres of public land, the most of any federal agency. This land, known as the National System of Public Lands, is primarily located in 12 Western states, including Alaska. The BLM also administers 700 million acres of sub-surface mineral estate throughout the nation. 


 

The BLM's mission is to manage and conserve the public lands for the use and enjoyment of present and future generations under our mandate of multiple-use and sustained yield. In Fiscal Year 2013, the BLM generated $4.7 billion in receipts from public lands.


 

UPCOMING EVENTS

 

July 20: Reimbursement Transportation Cost Payment Program (RTCP) enrollment begins.  More information here.

 

July 23, 6:00pm:  Delta Junction Chapter's Harvest Dinner.  Meet at the Pioneer Park in town. Click here for flyer. 


 
July 28, 3:00-6:00 pm: Plant Materials Center Open House 5310 Bodenburg Spur, Palmer (Butte). 3-6 pm. Details here.

 

 

July 31st - August 2nd:  Deltana State Fair.  Details here.

 

 

August 6-15th:  3rd annual Harvest Moon Local Food Festival.  Details here.

 

August 7-16 Tanana Valley State Fair.  Find info at www.tananavalleystatefair.com/ 

 

August 15-16:  Kenny Lake Fair.  Info: www.alaskakennylakefair.com

 

August 21-23: Kenai Peninsula State Fair.  Info at www.kenaipeninsulafair.com

 

August 27- September 7: Alaska State Fair

 

October 16: World Food Day

 

November 13-14: Alaska Farm Bureau Friday Forum, Anchorage

 



Need Website or Logo Design?

Here's our latest logo design for an AKFB member!

 

 


 

 "I really can't even express how happy I am with what you've done. Having a full time job and trying to farm sustainably makes time the most precious resource to me...and you saved me a ton of time by being so competent and so accessible. It really took a lot of pressure off from me by being able to hand the task over to you! It was well worth every penny!" - Holly Stewart, Northern Roots Farm (about her new logo)

Special Offer for Alaska Farm Bureau Members:

Logo Design $175 (regularly $300)

Call Wendy 480-242-5219 for your custom logo!

(AKFB's Webmaster)



Check out the newest websites we have created!