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February 1st, 2016

The Small Farms update summarizes announcements, information resources, opportunities and upcoming events relevant to small farms.  Please feel free to share this information in newsletters, email lists, etc. If you have announcements or resources you would like to include, please send us an email.  Subscribe here. Thank you again for your interest and support of small farms in New York.
Anu Rangarajan
Director, Cornell Small Farm Program
Featured Resource 
The Road to Organic Certification
If you are a vegetable producer considering certification or transitioning to organic certification, The Road to Organic Certification will provide the answers to some basic questions about getting started. This program is a user-friendly, interactive movie that leads farmers through a specific set of objectives with the end goal of becoming certified organic.
Northern NY Program Providing Beef Producers with Tool for Managing Pasture Resources in 2016
Northern NY beef producers looking to improve the quality and quantity of their land resources for grazing livestock in 2016 can take advantage of a pasture measurement tool purchased with a grant from the farmer-driven Northern New York Agricultural Development Program. Northern New York producers interested in learning about or access to a rising plate meter in 2016 may contact NNY Regional Livestock Team Leader Betsy Hodge, a livestock specialist with Cornell Cooperative Extension of St. Lawrence County, at 315.379.9192. For more information, visit Cornell's Beef Cattle Management blog.
The Agricultural Marketing Service (AMS) recently announced that they have withdrawn the United States Standards for Livestock and Meat Marketing Claims as of January 12th, 2016. Specifically, the AMS has withdrawn the Grass (Forage) Fed Claim for Ruminant Livestock and the Meat Products Derived from Such Livestock (Grass (Forage) Fed Marketing Claim Standard); and the Naturally Raised Claim for Livestock and the Meat and Meat Products Derived From Such Livestock (Naturally Raised Marketing Claim Standard). For further information, see the USDA's press release and a press release from the National Sustainable Agriculture Coalition in response.
NY Certified Organic Meeting: Four Soil Health Presentations
February 9, 2016, 10am. Jordan Hall, 630 West North Street at the New York State Agricultural Experimental Station in Geneva, NY
New York Organic Certified has announced three presentations and a farmer panel on managing soil health with crop rotations and forage production to be offered February 9 with speakers on site at the New York State Agricultural Experimental Station in Geneva, NY. Cornell Cooperative Extension offices will broadcast the program via web connection in Canton, Morrisville, Warsaw and Westport. This program features presentations by and discussions with farmers from across New York State, crop and dairy consultants, Cornell University researchers, and Cornell Cooperative Extension educators. Participants are asked to bring a dish to pass at the potluck lunch. There is no cost or need to register to attend the program.
Brown Bag Lunch Series: Farmers Market Benchmarks
The Farmers Market Federation of NY and Cornell Cooperative Extension of Broome County will be hosting a Brown Bag Lunch Webinar Series for farmers market farmers and vendors. The webinars will define Farmers Market Benchmarks, helping farmers to assess their own business success compared to the standards. The webinars will take place each
Thursday, February 11 - March 3, from noon to 1pm. Registration for these webinars is required, but they are free of charge. 
For the full webinar schedule and free registration, visit www.nyfarmersmarket.com/farmers-market-benchmarks/For more information contact the Federation office at 315-400-1447.
Wisconsin Food Armor® Specialists Bringing 6-Point Plan to Protect NY Dairy Producers
February 16 and 17, 2016, 10am-3pm.
Ways to reduce the potential for drug residues in dairy products will be presented at meetings organized by the Cornell Cooperative Extension associations of Northern New York; Northwest NY Dairy, Livestock and Field Crops Team; Quality Milk Production Services, and Elanco. Internet broadcasting and webinar technology will broadcast the speakers presentations from 10 am to 3 pm on February 16 in Watertown and February 17 in Malone to Extension sites in Canandaigua, Albion, and Warsaw, NY. Speakers with the nationally-recognized Food Armor® program, developed in Wisconsin, will cover how farmers can establish verifiable on-farm drug quality assurance practices for their farms and will discuss regulatory issues. For more information, costs, and registration for the programs in northern NY, contact Kim Morrill at 315.379.9192 or register online at reg.cce.cornell.edu/_10512, and in western NY, contact Libby Eiholzer at 585.786.2251 or register online atwyoming.cce.cornell.edu/dairy-institute .
Strategic Marketing In One Night!
February 16, 2016, 6:30-8:30PM. CCE-Cortland, 60 Central Avenue, Room 105, Cortland, NY
For early stage beginning farmers, experienced beginning farmers, and experienced farmers.
Is your marketing strategy "we sell whatever we have to anyone that will buy it"? Learn how a focused strategy and specific efforts can reduce your marketing labor needs and make every step count. If you want to sharpen and focus your marketing skills or just don't know where to begin developing a marketing plan, we can help! To register please visit groundswellcenter.org/2016-programs-listing/ and complete the Program Interest Form and indicate your interest in "Strategic Marketing".
Advanced Beekeeping
February 17, 2016, 6PM-8PM. Cornell Cooperative Extension Schuyler County, 323 Owego St, Unit 5, Montour Falls, NY 14865
Have you been tending honeybees for a while? Are you interested in learning even more? Join us of discussions of common honeybee diseases, management pitfalls to avoid, how to make splits or add new queens, how to overwinter you hive and how to handle dead-outs. Current owner and operator of Leo's Honey House, Cathy Halm is a retired veterinary technician and has more than 16 years of beekeeping experience. She manages 40 colonies in Campbell, NY. Please register at reg.cce.cornell.edu/CCESCAdvancedBeekeeping2015_244. Fee is $20, and if you take Beekeeping for Beginners and Advanced Beekeeping on Feb 17 2016, pay only $35 for both! Please call 535-7161 or email Roger at rlo28@cornell.edu Keep posted on the Facebook event page: https://www.facebook.com/events/1697306380546893/.
Specialty Cheese-Making Workshop 
February 23-24, Ithaca, NY
This course is an advanced level hands-on course. Participants will apply scientific principles to craft six varieties of cheese from pasteurization through curing. In addition to making cheese, the course will also focus on milk quality, affinage, and sensory evaluation of cheese. It is recommended that participants have experience in cheese making. The course is ideally suited for cheese makers (artisan and commercial), affineurs, and QA/QC. The course is instructed by industry experts and Cornell Dairy Foods Extension. Register here by February 5, 2016.
MANY MORE EVENTS at our Statewide Events Calendar.
Career, Etc. Opportunities
Harvest Home Farmer's Market 
We are seeking a temporary paid intern to assist with the development of farmers markets in low income communities by recruiting growers of fruits, vegetables and other locally grown and produced foods like herbs, meats, dairy, breads, pastries, etc. in the New York metropolitan region including New Jersey, Connecticut and Pennsylvania. The FRS will also establish communication with the NYS Department of Agriculture and Markets, the Farmer's Market Federation of New York and any other agriculture entities in the Metropolitan New York region that can support the goal of increased participation at market locations during the 2016 market season. For a full job description, please visit http://www.harvesthomefm.org/jobs__internships.aspx
Urban Farm Manager Needed
The Urban Farm Manager will plan and manage the growing season for a small urban market garden in Binghamton, NY. The Binghamton Urban Farm is a project of Volunteers Improving Neighborhood Environments (VINES), a not-for-profit organization. The Urban Farm produces 25-30 CSA style shares for 22 weeks of the growing season. The Manager will also share responsibilities with other employees in guiding youth, volunteers, interns, and community garden members in planning, gardening, educating, and learning about food insecurity and the need for affordable, fresh food. For full job description, visit vinesgardens.orgApply by February 26th, and send cover letter, resume or questions to jobs@vinesgardens.org.
Internship opportunity with Cross Island Farms: Organic Animals, Vegetables and an Edible Forest Garden
Cross Island Farms, a highly diversified organic farm on Wellesley Island in the Thousand Islands Region of the St. Lawrence River, is seeking one or more full time interns for spring/summer/fall 2016. One possible responsibility of the intern(s) will be to continue developing and expanding our "Edible Forest Garden" initially planted in 2013. Possible tasks include building infrastructure including a foot-bridge, gates and trellis using materials from the farm woods, designing seating areas, designing and planting understory, building stone walkways, building "corduroy road" crossings, sheet mulching, routine care and maintenance of garden, planting trees, bushes and ground cover plants, developing a marketing plan for the edible forest garden. For further information, visit crossislandfarms.com, check them out on Facebook, email danibaker@crossislandfarms.com or call 315-482-3663.
Center for Environmental Farming Systems' Small Farm Unit Manager
This position of Farm Manager is to plan and manage the implementation of production, research, education, demonstrations and extension outreach activities at the Small Farm Unit (SFU) of CEFS. The Farm Manager provides management, coordination, and support on-site at the SFU. For the full job description, visit CEFS' website. Apply online here: jobs.ncsu.edu/postings/62989.
Meat Processing Facility Opportunity at the Suffolk County Farm in Yaphank, NY
Suffolk County is looking for a private operator to modernize and commercialize an existing meat processing facility at the Suffolk County Farm in Yaphank. There are currently no meat processing facilities in Suffolk County so producers who want to sell meat to consumers or restaurants must first transport animals to upstate New York or other nearby states for processing. his ultimately raises production costs and reduces overall profits for local farmers. The ability to process animals at a local USDA facility in Suffolk County would create additional agricultural jobs and increase the income and sustainability of local farmers, the availability of locally-raised meat, and the diversity of agricultural enterprises in the region.
The Request for Expressions of Interest (RFEI) is now live at http://suffolkcountyny.gov/Business/AgriculturalandFishing.aspx.
Internships for Ag Students or Interested Producers
The apprentice and internship database on the ATTRA website has long been a staple for students in areas of study that include sustainable agriculture. This directory of on-the-job learning opportunities in sustainable and organic agriculture has been published since 1989 as a tool to help farmers and apprentices connect with each other. It is available for farms in the U.S and its territories, as well as a few in Canada and the Caribbean. Anyone can browse the listings for free. Check them out at https://attra.ncat.org/attra-pub/internships/.
NYSAMP Statewide Director
NYSAMP is a vibrant statewide mediation service dedicated to providing free and low-cost mediation and conflict resolution services to farmers, agribusiness, and rural communities. NYSAMP is seeking a highly motivated and qualified individual with exceptional interpersonal, leadership, organizational, and program development skills to oversee the continued growth and development of this nationally recognized program. For job responsibilities and qualifications, visit http://www.nysdra.org/blogpost/1268710/235776/JOB-OPPORTUNITY-Statewide-Director. To apply, send a resume and cover letter (with salary requirements) via email only to Charlotte Carter, Executive Director, charlotte@nysdra.org by February 1st. 2016.
Reber Rock Farm Store Part-Time Job Opening
Reber Rock Farm Store is growing and expanding, and they are looking for part-time help to make this happen. This person will work independently with significant autonomy in decision-making. This person will work 15-20 hours per week, year round, managing sales, organization, and promotion of the general store and on-farm events. Compensation is between $8 and $12/hr. Qualifications include excellent time management skills, task and detail oriented, retail experience, communication and listening skills, and entrepreneurial skills. Call Reber Rock Farm at 518-572-7377 or email them at info@reberrockfarm.com with any questions.
Laughing Earth Internship
Laughing Earth seeks 2 motivated farmers for our 2016 Internship. Our diverse farm includes 10 acres of organic vegetables and flowers, pastured poultry and pork, plus more! We market through our FarmShare Program (CSA), farm-stand, and year-round at the Troy Waterfront Farmers' Market. Our interns are here April through October to experience the arc of the growing season, and we expect them to participate in all aspects of our farm work. Our farm is 30 min. away from Albany, NY, Bennington, VT, and Williamstown, MA. Please apply via e-mail (laughingearthfarmshare@gmail.com) or US mail. Include a short letter of intent with what you hope to gain from, and give to, this experience, along with your resume and three references. See our website for more information! www.LaughingEarth.farm
Field Manager - Carversville Farm Foundation
Carversville Farm Foundation is hiring a Field Manager with significant experience growing Certified Organic vegetables, herbs, and perennials. This is an exciting opportunity for a professional grower looking for a career on the cutting edge of sustainable food production. You will have access to brand new, state-of-the art equipment and the opportunity to work with the world's foremost consultants on soil regeneration, land planning, and crop and livestock production on an ongoing basis. Responsibilities include planning and managing farm staff and apprentices in the production of vegetables, fruit, and herbs. This position reports directly to the Farm Manager and works continuously with the Herd Manager to plan daily, weekly, and seasonal workflow, personnel, and equipment distribution as well as the planting of cover crops, pasture, and other livestock forage. Full details on our website:  http://www.carversvillefarm.org/field-manager.html
Herd Manager Sought - Carversville Farm Foundation, PA
Carversville Farm Foundation is hiring a Herd Manager with significant experience managing all types of livestock in a pasture-based system, including cattle, sheep, goats, hogs, and poultry. We are currently building a multi-species grazing operation that will include a state-of-the art cow and goat dairy to support fluid milk bottling and an onsite creamery. Full details on our website: http://www.carversvillefarm.org/herd-manager.html.
Funding Opportunities
$25 Million Southern Tier Agricultural Industry Enhancement Program
The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) will begin offering farm ownership microloans to help with farm land and building purchases, creating a new financing avenue for farmers to buy and improve property. These microloans will be especially helpful to beginning or underserved farmers, U.S. veterans looking for a career in farming, and those who have small and mid-sized farming operations. Read the full press release for more information.
Agriculture and Food Research Initiative - Food, Agriculture, Natural Resources and Human Sciences Education and Literacy Initiative
This U.S. Department of Agriculture program seeks to provide fellowships to undergraduate students, predoctoral candidates, postdoctoral scholars, and professional development opportunities for secondary school teachers and educational professionals. The six priority areas include: plant health and production and plant products; animal health and production and animal products; food safety, nutrition, and health; bioenergy, natural resources, and environment; agriculture systems and technology; and agriculture economics and rural communities. The deadline to apply for predoctoral & postdoctoral fellowships is February 11, 2016, the deadline to apply for professional development opportunities for secondary school teachers is March 18, 2016, and the deadline to apply for research and extension experiential learning for undergraduate fellowships is March 24, 2016.
Latest Resources
Handbook Helps Reduce Farm Pathogens Using GAPs and Conservation Practices
Wild Farm Alliance has released a new handbook, titled Co-Managing Farm Stewardship with Food Safety GAPs and Conservation Practices: A Grower's and Conservationists' HandbookThis document describes many opportunities for making the farm safer by reducing pathogen presence. It covers how pathogens get on the farm, the prevalence of pathogens in wildlife and livestock, and environmental factors that influence pathogen reduction. A multi-barrier approach is presented where conservation practices and food safety Good Agricultural Practices (GAPs) can be used to reduce food safety risk. Download the handbook at wildfarmalliance.org.
The USDA's Agricultural Marketing Service (AMS) has published final guidance on Natural Resources and Biodiversity Conservation for Certified Organic Operations. This final guidance provides operators and certifiers examples of activities that would fulfill natural resource and biodiversity conservation requirements. The final guidance also clarifies the roles of certified operations, certifiers, and inspectors in the implementation and verification of these production practices.
UP UP! Farm Film Festival
Up Up Farm is a collection of feature length, independently produced films and shorts. The Greenhorns team proudly introduces the  UP UP! Farm Film Festival, a specially curated package with 17 sumptuous hours of their favorite farm films. The films in this festival package paint a broad picture -- exploring questions of farmland access, rural livelihoods, and the relationships between people and place. By telling their stories we herald the glorious, thriving culture of young farmers and new agrarian economies. To bring this DIY film festival to your community, visit www.thegreenhorns.net/up-up-farm-film-festival and begin your journey of expending perspectives on the past, present, and future of the young farmer movement. 
Biodiversity Critical to Maintaining Healthy Ecosystems
A group of international scientists, including USGS researchers, has found clear evidence that biological communities rich in species are substantially healthier and more productive than those depleted of species. Using new scientific techniques, scientists detected the clear signals of numerous underlying mechanisms linking the health and productivity of ecosystems with species richness. To learn more, read the USGS press release or read the full article,"Integrative modelling reveals mechanisms linking productivity and plant species richness" online.
Save and Grow in Practice
This new FAO book takes a close look at how the world's major cereals maize, rice and wheat can be grown in ways that respect and even leverage natural ecosystems. Drawing on case studies from around the planet, the new book illustrates how the "Save and Grow" approach to agriculture advocated by FAO is already being successfully employed to produce staple grains, pointing the way to a more sustainable future for farming and offering practical guidance on how the world can pursue its new sustainable development agenda. For more information and to read the book, visit www.fao.org/publications/save-and-grow/maize-rice-wheat/en/.
Get Connected!
Need personal help?
Sometimes local questions are best answered by your neighborhood Cornell Cooperative Extension agent. Check out our county-by-county listing of small farm agents here. You can also get to know our Cornell Small Farms Program staff, or contact us.   Just starting to farm?  We have an extensive directory of beginning farmer service providers across the Northeast in the "Who Can Help?" section of our Northeast Beginning Farmers Project website.
SFP Small Farms Program Logo
The Small Farms Update is intended as a resource for farmers and agricultural service providers in New York and the Northeast, and is provided to you by Cornell Small Farms Program. Our mission is to foster the sustainability of diverse, thriving small farms that contribute to food security, healthy rural communities, and the environment.  The Cornell Small Farm Program is a joint effort of the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences and Cornell Cooperative Extension.