CT NOFA eNewsletter
December 26, 2006
v.2 no.9
Join CT NOFA!
Learn about the benefits of membership at http://www.ctnofa.org/Join.htm
Sign up for the e-Newsletter, please send an email to: janet@ctnofa.org

 

In this Issue:

Upcoming CT NOFA Events
January 13, Getting Started in Organic Farming Conference
January 31, February 1, 2, 5 and 6, 2007, 5 Day Course in Organic Land Care
February 10, Community Farming Conference
March 10, 2007, Cultivating an Organic Connecticut Conference

Upcoming NOFA Related Events
Jan 3 & 4, Whole Foods Market’s Local Grower & Supplier Seminar
Jan 6, Doing the Math: Financials for Starting a Goat Dairy
Jan 9 & 10, 23, 24, and Feb 6 & 7, Tilling the Soil of Opportunity
Jan 11, Biofuels Symposium
Jan 11, Conservation Options for Connecticut Farmland
Jany 13, NOFA-VT’s 2nd Annual Direct Marketing Conference
Jany 17, Green Tomatoes: Rubbish or Relish
Jan 17 & 18, Whole Foods Market’s Local Grower & Supplier Seminar
Jan 20, 20th Annual NOFA Winter Conference - Worcester, MA
Jan 20, Vermont Grazing Conference
Jan 22, Growing Places
Jan 26, 27 & 28, NOFA-NY's 2007 Annual Conference
Jan 27, Livestock Marketing toolkit Debut.
Feb 1, Introduction to Organic Milk Production
Feb 3, Dairy Goat Workshops
Feb 10, NOFA-VT’s 25th Annual Winter Conference
Feb 10, An Introduction to Growing Apples in the Home Garden
Feb 10, Pruning and Training Apple Trees, A Hands-On Workshop
Feb 14-16, Understanding Organics: Livestock Management and Health

Community Board
Save the NOFA Summer Conference!
Volunteer for CT NOFA
Work for CT NOFA
Pfeiffer Center Internship
Two Internships at Phillies Bridge Farm Project in New Paltz, NY
Established Organic Farm, Farm Stand and CSA business for rent or sale
Small farm for sale in North Amherst, MA
Apprentice needed at Aiki Farms in Ledyard Connecticut
Small Horse Riding School looking to Lease Land

Connecticut News and Stories
Tax Exemption for Farm Buildings
Urgent - Only a Few Days Left To Sign onto CT DEP's Pesticide Registry
DVD of WORKING THE LAND: THE STORY OF CONNECTICUT AGRICULTURE is now available.
Five CT NOFA Farms featured in the Waterbury-Republican

National and International News and Stories
New publishing rules restrict scientists
Critics call EPA's new rule a loophole for big business
Bush relaxes environmental regulations
National Organic Standards Board Stacked with Industry Reps.
Europe passes tough chemical law

Other Items of Interest
How Food Finds its Way to Your Plate
The Demeter Certified Biodynamic® Producers list now online.
Great Websites

 



Upcoming CT NOFA Events
January 13
Getting Started in Organic Farming Conference, New Haven.  Featuring many CT NOFA farmers.  CT Agricultural Experiment Station, 123 Huntington St, New Haven.
http://www.ctnofa.org/events/GettingStarted.php

January 31, February 1, 2, 5 and 6, 2007
5 Day Course in Organic Land Care,
New Haven, Connecticut. An intensive course on organic landscaping. Optional test at end for NOFA Organic Land Care Professional Accreditation. http://www.organiclandcare.net/events/6thannual5day.php

February 10
Community Farming Conference, Speakers:  Lynda Simkins of the Natick Community Organic Farm, on combining educational programs and farming, and Elizabeth Henderson, author of Sharing the Harvest, on starting up a Community Supported Agriculture project.  Mercy Center 167 Neck Road in Madison CT. http://www.ctnofa.org/events/CommunityFarming.php

March 10, 2007
Cultivating an Organic Connecticut Conference with keynote speakers Nancy Jack Todd and John Todd http://www.ctnofa.org/events/CaOC.php

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Upcoming NOFA Related Events
January 3 & 4
Whole Foods Market’s Local Grower & Supplier Seminar Portland Maine Please join Whole Foods Market in January 2007 at our Local Grower & Supplier Seminar. To apply please send an email to: NA.Newitems@wholefoods.com. These seminars will open the door to expand the partnership with Whole Foods Market and local food businesses.

January 6
Doing the Math: Financials for Starting a Goat Dairy, UVM Extension Office, Morrisville, VT 12:45-4:30 PM call Becky Gollin, rgollin@uvm.edu, at the U. Vermont Center for Sustainable Ag If interested in car-pooling, please call Joyce E. Meader, Dairy/ Livestock Educator, UCONN Cooperative Extension System’s office at 860-774-9600.

Jan 9 & 10, 23, 24, and Feb 6 & 7
Tilling the Soil of Opportunity
agricultural entrepreneurship business plan training course this spring. Sessions are held at the Dutchess County Cornell Cooperative Extension building at 2715 Rte. 44, in Millbrook, NY. The six-day course (three 2-day sessions) is designed for people who are searching for innovative ideas and enhanced marketing opportunities in the area of value-added agriculture and food. Over 50 entrepreneurs or potential entrepreneurs have completed the practical training program, which has been offered five times. The hours are Tuesdays, noon-9 p.m. and Wednesdays from 8 a.m.-2 p.m. Each session builds on the previous ones. Each two-day session covers several topics. They include: "Taking Stock of Your Resources"; "Business Concept", "Mission and Goals"; "Legal Structure" (regulations, contracts and leases); "Management from the Ground Up"; "Marketing Issues"; "Marketing Strategies"; "Budgeting"; "Record Keeping and Accounting"; "Cash Flow and Financial Statements"; "Financing"; and "Business Growth Issues and Strategies". Instructor Bob Weybright, of Dutchess County Cooperative Extension is a business and marketing specialist with over 25 years in the food business. At each session, guest speakers such as small business attorneys, bankers, insurance agents, and marketing specialists with experience serving the farming community will be available for consultation. The workshop brochure can be viewed at http://www.nysaes.cornell.edu/hp/events/detail.php?id=33 For more information about the workshop contact: Cheryl Leach at 315-787-2622 or cal35@cornell.edu. To register contact: Nancy Halas at 845-677-8223 or nh26@cornell.edu. For more information about NxLeveL visit: http://www.nxlevel.org

January 11
Biofuels Symposium, U. of Connecticut, Storrs, CT http://biodiesel.engr.uconn.edu/home/Brochure.pdf If interested in car-pooling, please call Joyce E. Meader, Dairy/ Livestock Educator, UCONN Cooperative Extension System’s office at 860-774-9600.

January 11
Conservation Options for Connecticut Farmland, Thompson Public Library, N. Grosvenordale, Ct 06255 6:30 – 8:30 PM Includes soup and salad supper (snowdate January 31st) Contact Jiff Martin, Working Lands Alliance 1-860-683-4230 If interested in car-pooling, please call Joyce E. Meader, Dairy/ Livestock Educator, UCONN Cooperative Extension System’s office at 860-774-9600.

January 13
NOFA-VT’s 2nd Annual Direct Marketing Conference Vermont Law School in South Royalton, VT. Keynote speaker, Vance Corum, has 28 years experience in all realms of agricultural direct marketing. The conference will feature 16 workshops, focusing on topics ranging from Extending the CSA Season, to Cooperative Farm Stores in the Northeast, and Agritourism in Vermont. Registration fee for the conference is $25 which includes lunch. More information will be posted online shortly at www.nofavt.org. To register please call the NOFA-VT office at 802-434-4122 or e-mail info@nofavt.org.

January 17
Green Tomatoes: Rubbish or Relish (value-added products seminar), Sturbridge Host Hotel, Sturbridge, MA 9-3:30 PM Farm business consultants: Gene Gouthier, Rick Hermonot, and Jon Jaffe Contact your First Pioneer Farm Credit office or 1-800-562-2235 www.firstpioneer.com If interested in car-pooling, please call Joyce E. Meader, Dairy/ Livestock Educator, UCONN Cooperative Extension System’s office at 860-774-9600.

January 17 & 18
Whole Foods Market’s Local Grower & Supplier Seminar Greenfield Massachusetts Please join Whole Foods Market in January 2007 at our Local Grower & Supplier To apply please send an email to: NA.Newitems@wholefoods.com. These seminars will open the door to expand the partnership with Whole Foods Market and local food businesses.

January 20
20th Annual Northeast Organic Farming Association Winter Conference Bancroft School in Worcester, MA http://www.nofamass.org/conferences/w2007/index.php

January 20
Vermont Grazing Conference, Vermont Technical College, Randolph Center, VT 9-5 PM http://www.uvm.edu/~pasture/Documents/2007%20GC%20Brochure%20lettersz.pdf If interested in car-pooling, please call Joyce E. Meader, Dairy/ Livestock Educator, UCONN Cooperative Extension System’s office at 860-774-9600.

January 22
Growing Places, Online. Growing Places was developed to assist individuals in exploring the idea of starting a farm or other ag-related enterprises. The next series will start the week of January 22, 2007 with its sessions offered only online. The time of taking the class afterwards is flexible to your schedule. The registration fee is $125 or $100 if postmarked by 12/31/06. Financial assistance is available. For all information, contact Beth Holtzman at 802-223-2389 or, toll-free 1-800-860-1282 both ext 15 or email wagn@uvm.edu. Sponsored by the Women’s Agricultural Network. Cost: $100-$125. Contact: Beth Holtzman, 802-223-2389 - wagn@uvm.edu

January 26-28
NOFA-NY Annual Organic Conference: Building the Farm Economy Around Local Foods. Holiday Inn, Syracuse, NY. The conference will feature over 55 workshops of interest to vegetable, grain, and livestock farmers, gardeners, food businesses, food system activists, consumers, teens and children! Saturday evening will include an anniversary celebration to commemorate 25 years of NYS organic farming education and community. This year’s conference features an exciting keynote lineup including Joel Salatin from Polyface Farm, Swoope, VA; Richard Pirog from the Leopold Center for Sustainable Agriculture, Iowa State University; Judy Wicks owner of White Dog Café, Philadelphia, PA, and Guest Speaker, Joel McNair from Graze magazine. Don’t miss this opportunity to expand your knowledge of organic agriculture and network among the leaders in the industry. The full conference program and registration forms are available at the NOFA-NY website, visit: www.nofany.org.

January 27
Livestock Marketing toolkit Debut. 10:30 AM. Saranac Lake Free Library, Saranac , NY. How about some locally-raised beef, pork or lamb for dinner tonight? With funding from the Northern New York Agricultural Development Program (NNYADP) and the New York Farm Viability Institute, Inc., Bernadette Logozar of Cornell Cooperative Extension of Franklin County is assembling a marketing toolkit to help livestock farmers sell their products and capitalize on the increasing numbers of people looking to connect to local farms and local food sources. The marketing materials – some free, the Livestock Marketing Toolkit is $15 - will be available.. $10 registration fee includes refreshments, lunch and materials. The farmer-led Northern New York Agricultural Development Program funds research, education and outreach for New York ’s six northernmost counties: Clinton, Essex, Franklin, Jefferson, Lewis and St. Lawrence. Cost: $10. Phone: 518-483-7403 www.nnyagdev.org

February 1
Introduction to Organic Milk Production Organic dairy farmers and advisors will discuss the Organic Milk Market, Organic Certification Requirements and the Transition Process. Register by January 25. All workshops will be held at the Brigham Hill Community Barn in Grafton, Massachusetts, 10:00 - 2:30. The cost is $10 per person for each workshop ($5 for NOFA members). Lunch will be provided. If you have questions, contact Kate Rossiter, NOFA/Mass Organic Dairy Coordinator, at (413) 625-0118, or Don Franczyk, Baystate Organic Certifiers, at (978) 297-4171. Please send contact information with a check payable to NOFA/Mass, to Kate Rossiter, 68 Elm St, Shelburne Falls, MA, 01370.

February 3
Dairy Goat Workshops, NH Farm and Forest Exposition, Center of New Hampshire- Radisson Hotel, Manchester, NH 10-Noon Controlling Internal Parasites; Natural Remedies for Common Health Problems in Small Ruminants www.nhfarmandforestexpo.org/schedule.htm If interested in car-pooling, please call Joyce E. Meader, Dairy/ Livestock Educator, UCONN Cooperative Extension System’s office at 860-774-9600.

February 10
NOFA-VT’s 25th Annual Winter Conference. Vermont Technical College in Randolph , Vermont. Keynote speaker: Kathy Lawrence, former Executive Director of the National Campaign for Sustainable Agriculture, (www.sustainableagriculture.net). Prior to joining the National Campaign, Kathy directed Just Food, a New York City-based non-profit that she founded in 1995 (www.justfood.org). Also featured at the Winter Conference are 32 workshops taught by experienced farmers and agriculture specialists for farmers, home gardeners, educators and concerned consumers. Future farmers can attend the Children’s Conference for ages 6 to 13. Registration is available in advance or at the door the day of the conference. Pre-registration is recommended. To receive a conference brochure and registration form, please call the NOFA-VT office at: (802) 434-4122 or email a request to info@nofavt.org. Registration fee is $35.00 for members and $45.00 for nonmembers. $5.00 discount for farmers. The conference will begin at 8:30am with the keynote at 9am and an organic ice-cream social at 5 p.m. For more information about this event, visit: www.nofavt.org.

February 10
An Introduction to Growing Apples in the Home Garden Brooksby Orchard, Peabody, MA, 9:00 AM - Noon, The visual experience of flowering fruit trees in the home landscape is surpassed only by the delicious variety of summer and fall fruits which they produce. Growing apples successfully can be a horticultural challenge, but it can be done! Dr. Wes Autio will present an in-depth program on how to grow apples in the home landscape. Varieties, rootstocks, young-tree care, nutrition, training, and pest control will be covered. Tuition = $60 http://www.massaggieseminars.org/seminars.html

February 10
Pruning and Training Apple Trees, A Hands-On Workshop
Brooksby Orchard, Peabody, MA 1:30 PM - 3:30 PM. Pruning and training apple trees are often challenging: where to make the first cut? In the pruning workshop, Dr. Wes Autio will guide participants through the step-by-step annual process of pruning apples. Participants will have the opportunity to conduct actual pruning and gain both experience and confidence in pruning fruit trees in order to produce a bountiful crop. This workshop will be entirely out of doors, please dress appropriately for potentially wet, cold, and muddy conditions. Some pruning tools will be available for pruning workshops, but please bring your own if possible. Tuition = $40 http://www.massaggieseminars.org/seminars.html

February 14-16
Understanding Organics: Livestock Management and Health – Alfred State College, Alfred, NY The Northeast Organic Farming Association of Vermont (NOFA-VT), in partnership with Quality Milk Production Services (QMPS) of Cornell University, are pleased to host two initial conferences designed to educate extension personnel, veterinarians, and other professionals working with organic or transitioning livestock producers. These conferences will focus on the comprehensive nuts and bolts of organic livestock production and will serve as the platform for future resources and trainings. www.qmps.vet.cornell.edu/nofa/nofa.html. To receive a registration brochure or for more information, contact Lisa McCrory at 802-434-4122.

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Community Board

Save the NOFA Summer Conference!
It looks as if after 18 years of an amazing relationship with Hampshire College where NOFA has held its annual NOFA Summer Conference and Celebration of Sustainable Living, we are about to part company for 2008. An ever earlier student return time coupled with the size of our group necessitating no other groups being on campus, makes it impossible for us to have the conference on our traditional 2nd weekend of August. When asked about having the 2008 conference on the second weekend in June (the only other time that Hampshire could accommodate us), the membership and conference attendees voted overwhelmingly that this date was not a possibility.

Here is my plan. For the next four months we have to beat the bushes for a site, perhaps in Mass, perhaps in southern VT, NH, eastern NY, CT or RI that can accommodate 1000 – 1500 people for a workshop based educational conference on organic farming and related issues. It needs to be economical for low income farmers and folks with big families. Is there a college around that would fit the bill for one of the first three weekends in August? We would like to be able to camp (200-300) and to dorm (200-300), to eat organic food while there, have space for a large plenary session with a keynoter. Is there a retreat center that could house us, a state park, a camp? Are we willing to consider a conference in the fall, in September or October? Put on your thinking caps and let us know if you have any good leads or creative ideas. Contact Julie Rawson at (978) 355-2853 or Julie@nofamass.org.

Volunteer for CT NOFA

  • New! Hang Flyers in your Community - Print out flyers for our upcoming events and post at your local library, coffee shop, doctor's or vetrinary office, food store, etc. Be sure to ask permission to post before hanging flyers. Current flyers: Cultivating an Organic Connecticut Conference.
  • CT NOFA Event Help Next CT NOFA events are Getting Started in Organic Farming Conference on January 13 and the Community Farming Conference on February 10. Working members pay only $20 a year if they commit to volunteering at CT NOFA events for 5 hours. Find out more here. Contact Denise D'Agostino for more information at d.dagostino@snet.net
  • NOFA Organic Land Care Program Event Help
    The next NOFA Organic Land Care Program is the 5 Day Course in Organic Land Care Jan 31, Feb 1, 2, 5 & 6. Contact Bill Duesing for more information at ctnofa@ctnofa.org.
  • Volunteer outreach coordinator Research events that we can display at, Contact them for permission to display, Develop outreach materials Go to events or help schedule other volunteers to go to event. Contact Denise D'Agostino for more information at d.dagostino@snet.net
  • Reporter Goes to CT NOFA events with camera and takes pictures, Gets people’s names that are in pictures and permission to use pictures, Writes stories for Gleanings/ press releases/ website. Contact Denise D'Agostino for more information at d.dagostino@snet.net
  • Distribution Coordinator Annual guide distribution - April through July - coordinates other volunteers statewide. Periodic checking in of distribution points to see if they need more materials. Contact Denise D'Agostino for more information at d.dagostino@snet.net
  • News Watch Reads the newspapers, watches TV and listens to the radio for mention of CT NOFA or its members. Clips articles and records shows and archives them. Formatting to digital files would be ideal for website and permanent saving. This can be done by the same or different volunteer. Contact Denise D'Agostino for more information at d.dagostino@snet.net
  • Join a committee:
    Taste! Organic Connecticut - contact Jim Roby at jroby7088@sbcglobal.net
    Fundraising - contact Janet Heller at janet.heller@snet.net
    Organic Land Care - contact Kim Stoner at kimberly.stoner@po.state.ct.us
    Cultivating an Organic Connecticut Conference - contact Jennifer Brown at jennifer@ctnofa.org

Work for CT NOFA

  • CT NOFA is hiring a bookkeeper. Please send resume to Bill Duesing at CT NOFA, PO Box 164, Stevenson, CT 06491. Job description to follow.
  • CT NOFA is hiring the Gleanings Editor. Please send resume to Bill Duesing at CT NOFA, PO Box 164, Stevenson, CT 06491. Job description to follow.

Pfeiffer Center Internship
Spring 2007 - Spring 2008 at the Pfeiffer Center , 260 Hungry Hollow Road , Chestnut Ridge NY 10977; info@pfeiffercenter.org; 845-352-5020 x20 A one year opportunity to work in our Biodynamic garden, for students in agriculture and environmental sciences and related fields that want to broaden and deepen their understanding of organic sustainable agriculture and the Biodynamic approach. This opportunity includes organic beekeeping and some classes relating to the work of Sunbridge College . Interns are provided with a private dormitory room and seasonal vegetables from the garden . No stipend is provided. Internship at the Center provides a unique opportunity to experience the active educational and artistic life of the Threefold Community.

Two Internships at Phillies Bridge Farm Project in New Paltz, NY
Practical internships in sustainable agriculture and environmental education. Internship in Sustainable Agriculture and Internship in Farming & Environmental Education. To Apply: Send letter, resume, and names and phone numbers of 3 references to: Farmers, 45 Phillies Bridge Road , New Paltz , NY 12561 or info@philliesbridge.org. Call (845) 256-9108 for more information. http://www.philliesbridge.org/

Established Organic Farm, Farm Stand and CSA business for rent or sale
Six tillable acres, certified organic, Connecticut River frontage, 150 member CSA and farmstand business in Sunderland, MA for rent or sale to experienced CSA farmer. Turnkey, fully-equipped operation. Solar-powered farm stand. Potential for 12 more tillable, transitional acres. Please submit a brief resume and letter of interest by email. info@riverlandfarm.com.

Small farm for sale in North Amherst, MA
3.9 acres of prime stone-free vegetable soil (Belgrade silt loam), barn, stream, 1915 farmhouse with two porches, three bedrooms, two full baths (one new), completely redone: new paint and varnish inside and out, new roof, new Buderus gas-fired hot water baseboard heating, complete new wiring, new water heater and appliances, new septic system, etc. Organically managed vegetables/roots/herbs last two summers; existing CSAs in area have long waitlists. Two miles from UMass and Amherst village center; ten miles from Northampton . $359,000. Call (516) 639 1033; (516) 459 8986; (631) 765 5207; cutwater@earthlink.net or lihildebrand@yahoo.com.

Apprentice needed at Aiki Farms in Ledyard Connecticut
A special apprentice is needed at Aiki Farms in Ledyard Connecticut. We do specialty crops for farmers market, and for chefs, as well as private customers. The farm work utilizes Biodynamic, and GROW BIOINTENSIVE methods, with certification in GROW BIOINTENSIVE, via Ecology action as a possibility.

Because we have a deep passion for life, we see the nurturing of our bodies, and the care for ourselves as important as caring for the environment, therefore we expect the apprentice to sit zazen each morning with us, and practice Aikido, inclusive of Iaido (sword meditation) and the use of the Jo and Boken (staff and wooden sword) as tools to focus, center, and sharpen our awareness of the here and now. We are careful to balance the farm work to allow for the body arts if the apprentice desires to become a certified Aikido instructor, we are certified to do that through Humbo Dojo in Japan, as well as Birankai international.

The farm is active during summer months with farm workshops, and Aikido seminars involving students and teachers from Penn. To Boston Mass. Food and quarters will be provided, as well as a percentage of the farmers market income. It is a festive farm, with many celebrations, but the passion to be fully alive in this moment is a necessary qualification.

My name is Robert Burns, I am a fifth generation farmer, with the rank of Shidoin 4th dan I have been farming all my life, and practicing Aikido for the past 26 years. Please come if you have no expectations. burns@aikifarms.com http://www.aikifarms.com/


Small Horse Riding School looking to Lease Land
I am looking to lease a few acres of land to start a small riding school. If you know of any farmers who are struggling to keep their land profitable, and who would be interested in a cooperative effort, please forward this email. The horses would be kept naturally and their manure would be free from pesticides to be used for organic farming. I have life long passion for horses and riding and would like to give back to the community and provide safe, affordable lessons for children. I am in Shelton. thank you, Sarah Block SarahColli@aol.comSarahColli@aol.com

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Connecticut News and Stories
Tax Exemption for Farm Buildings
Please see web site for CT statutes: www.cga.ct.gov/2006/sup/Chap203.htm. Section 12-91. The towns can initiate up to $100,000 exemption per farm building, in addition to the $200,000 for the equipment exemption. We need to get the word out to the towns for next year, if they have missed this years’ opportunity to support their farmers.

Urgent - Only a Few Days Left To Sign onto CT DEP's Pesticide Registry
Sign Up by December 31 to Be Protected From Neighbors' Spraying Next Spring. Citizens can protect themselves, their families and their pets from toxic pesticide exposures from their neighbors' lawn and tree-care pesticide applications by being notified 24 hours in advance of their neighbors spraying, thereby allowing time to close windows and bring children and pets inside. You cannot get this notification unless you are signed onto the state registry. The Pesticide Registry requires that pesticide applicators give residents who have signed the registry 24-hour advance notice of their intent to spray an abutting property, which includes neighbors in the front, in the rear, and adjoining properties on either side.

Registration must be completed by December 31 and must be sent in writing to the CT Department of Environmental Protection, Pesticide Division, 79 Elm Street, Hartford, CT 06106. State residents can download the registry form by visiting the State of Connecticut Department of Environmental Protection's website at: http://www.dep.state.ct.us/wst/pesticides/registry_prenotification.htm or call the DEP Pesticide Division at (860) 424-3324; or visit EHHI's website at www.ehhi.org to download the pesticide registry form.

DVD of WORKING THE LAND: THE STORY OF CONNECTICUT AGRICULTURE is now available.
Acclaimed Actor Sam Waterston Narrates this "Farm-Fresh" Documentary! Since its earliest days, Connecticut farmers and the farming way of life helped to build the state, give sustenance to millions, and provide residents with a special sense of place. Today, farming in Connecticut is at a crossroads as lifestyle changes and development pressures threaten the state's 4,200 remaining farms. Using evocative archival images and beautiful contemporary footage, WORKING THE LAND tells the fascinating story of Connecticut agriculture from its beginnings through today. Sam Waterston narrates this compelling look at how farming remains integral to the state's food system, economy, landscape and culture. Along the way, we'll visit many picturesque state farms and meet the colorful farmers who work the lands and waters of Connecticut. The DVD includes a special expanded Director's Cut of the documentary, three music videos featuring state farmers and farms, a bonus song written especially for the project, and program scene selection. If you would like to order by phone, please call us at 860.873.3328. We will ship your DVD(s) by Priority Mail, so you will receive your order within just a couple of days after you place it. Click for More Information on the WORKING THE LAND DVD http://www.workingtheland.com

Five CT NOFA Farms featured in the Waterbury-Republican
The Waterbury paper did an article on CSA's and has a great slideshow of 5 NOFA farms: Chubby Bunny Farm, Fort Hill Farm, Frostfire Farm, Local Farm and Maple View Farm. If your computer has Flash, you can check this out-- http://media.rep-am.com/media/farms

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National and International News and Stories

New publishing rules restrict scientists
By JOHN HEILPRIN, ASSOCIATED PRESS WRITER Wednesday, December 13, 2006. WASHINGTON -- The Bush administration is clamping down on scientists at the U.S. Geological Survey, the latest agency subjected to controls on research that might go against official policy. New rules require screening of all facts and interpretations by agency scientists who study everything from caribou mating to global warming. The rules apply to all scientific papers and other public documents, even minor reports or prepared talks, according to documents obtained by The Associated Press.

Top officials at the Interior Department's scientific arm say the rules only standardize what scientists must do to ensure the quality of their work and give a heads-up to the agency's public relations staff."This is not about stifling or suppressing our science, or politicizing our science in any way," Barbara Wainman, the agency's director of communications, said Wednesday. "I don't have approval authority. What it was designed to do is to improve our product flow."

Some agency scientists, who until now have felt free from any political interference, worry that the objectivity of their work could be compromised. "I feel as though we've got someone looking over our shoulder at every damn thing we do. And to me that's a very scary thing. I worry that it borders on censorship," said Jim Estes, an internationally recognized marine biologist in the USGS field station at Santa Cruz, Calif. To read the whole article, go to: http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/bush_scientists

Critics call EPA's new rule a loophole for big business
By Mark Clayton | Staff writer of The Christian Science Monitor, December 20, 2006 edition. A new reporting rule, aimed to ease the burden on small firms, may instead help Ashland and other giant companies.

In a bid to trim the regulatory burden on small businesses, the Environmental Protection Agency is set to relax the rules on what toxic chemicals they have to report. But in a twist, the EPA's newly revised Toxics Release Inventory rule will also make it possible for hundreds of large corporations to avoid reporting specific amounts of toxic chemicals they release into the air, land, or water, environmentalists warn.

The rule change has cheered small-business groups, generated widespread public opposition, and caught the eye of some Democratic congressmen, who will take control of Congress next month. It takes effect immediately. The change affects companies that release relatively small amounts of toxic materials but still have to report them to the federal Toxics Release Inventory.

Under current TRI rules, companies have to report emissions of any toxic chemical that exceed 500 pounds in a year. Under the new rules, facilities could fill out a simpler form that omits reporting the amount of toxic chemicals if they created less than 5,000 pounds of it in a year and released no more than 2,000 pounds of it into the environment.

But the move makes it harder for neighborhoods or environmentalists to find out how much of a toxic chemical, such as toluene, a nearby factory is emitting. Researchers have linked toluene, used to make dyes and as a solvent, to various health problems. Similar streamlined reporting could be applied to another class of even more dangerous toxins if the waste was less than 500 pounds, entirely recycled, and not released at all. Read the whole article at: http://www.csmonitor.com/2006/1220/p02s01-usgn.html

Bush relaxes environmental regulations
December 8, 2006, BY ERIN KELLY, GANNETT NEWS SERVICE, WASHINGTON -- With little fanfare, the Bush administration recently announced that pesticide users would no longer have to get a federal Clean Water Act permit to spray toxic chemicals over rivers, lakes and streams. To the White House, it was the latest in a series of efforts to reduce burdensome federal regulations that vex business owners and local governments. To conservation groups, it was President George W. Bush using his power to once again weaken environmental and public health laws. Read the whole article at: http://www.freep.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20061208/NEWS07/612080329/1009

National Organic Standards Board Stacked with Industry Reps.
The USDA, behind closed doors, recently announced several highly questionable appointees to the National Organic Standards Board (NOSB). Despite calls from the organic community to let the public know ahead of time who the nominees were, the USDA kept the names of the nominees secret. The NOSB advises the USDA on how to interpret and implement national organic standards. Despite federal law that mandates that the 15-member NOSB must be broadly representative of the organic community, the USDA's recent appointees are all notable for their past or present ties to corporate agribusiness. For example the appointee for the seat reserved for a "Consumer and Public Interest Group Representative" was given to Tracy Miedema, who works for Stahlbush Island Farms, a split-farm operation with 3/4 of its acreage non-organic. Miedema, who previously worked for a subsidiary of General Mills (Small Planet) freely admits that Stahlbush utilizes Monsanto's herbicide Roundup, as well as other chemical pesticides and fungicides. The USDA's appointee for the seat reserved for a scientist is Katrina Heinze, who works for Small Planet/General Mills, a company with a hardball reputation for selling sugar-laden cereals to kids, supporting GMOs, and industrial agriculture. Heinze was forced to resign from the NOSB last year, under pressure from the OCA and the Consumer's Union, after being appointed "consumer representative" to the NOSB. Another one of the "organic experts" appointed to this powerful government board is a representative of Campbell's Soup. Please tell the USDA that organic consumers want all nominees and future appointments to be made in a fair and transparent manner and that we believe the current crop of pro-industry appointees are completely unacceptable. Learn more and take action: http://www.organicconsumers.org/rd/nosb.cfm

Europe passes tough chemical law
By Marla Cone, Times Staff Writer, December 14, 2006. EU's parliament votes to regulate 30,000 toxic substances. The reforms will have a major effect on U.S. industry.

The European Parliament on Wednesday approved the world's most stringent law aimed at protecting people and the environment from thousands of toxic chemicals — legislation that will have a far-reaching effect on industries and products worldwide, including in the United States. The new law, which regulates about 30,000 toxic substances, is far more restrictive and comprehensive than U.S. regulations. The most hazardous — an estimated 1,500 — could be banned or restricted. Included on that list are some compounds used in electronics, furniture, toys, cosmetics and other everyday items.

The Parliament's vote in Strasbourg, France, came after seven years of review and contentious debate. The legislation, though adamantly opposed by U.S. industry and the Bush administration, was not as strong as some European political parties had sought. Still, environmental activists in the United States were thrilled, saying that Washington has fallen behind in regulating chemicals and predicting that the European law will lead to safer products on both sides of the Atlantic. Read the whole article at: http://www.latimes.com/news/printedition/asection/la-fg-chemicals14dec14,1,6782734.story

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Other Items of Interest

How Food Finds its Way to Your Plate
Talk of the Nation, November 24, 2006 · Interview with Michael Pollen. Where does your food really come from, and what should you have for dinner? Chances are that your food traveled hundreds of miles before it landed on your plate. But some experts say eating local might make us healthier, and better stewards of the environment. We talk about the business of agriculture with author Michael Pollan, author Brian Halweil and Jennifer L. Wilkins, a Kellogg Food and Society Policy Fellow at Cornell University. Listen to the whole story at: http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=6534839

The Demeter Certified Biodynamic® Producers list now online.
A complete listing of Demeter Certified Biodynamic farms in the US and the products they offer is online at www.biodynamics.com. Follow the link to "Demeter Producers". Many farms ship products via UPS and the Postal Service. Butter, cheese, coffee, flax, oats, apples, raisins, jams, teas, vinegars, wines and seeds are only some of the quality Biodynamic foods available and can be delivered to your doorstep. Some products can be direct-ordered from the producer. Others are available from: Steiner Storehouse - www.steinerstorehouse.com and Spiritual Food for the New Millennium - www.schooloflife.org

Great Websites:
Stop Junk Mail - http://www.newdream.org/junkmail/form.php
100 Mile Diet - http://100milediet.org/home/
Reducing Food Miles - http://attra.ncat.org/farm_energy/food_miles.html
Other great tips and ideas and web links are on http://idealbite.com/tiplibrary/index.php

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