January Mid-Month, 2012 
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GLEANINGS: n. 1. That which has been acquired by gleaning. 2. The monthly eNewsletter of CT NOFA. [Glean:v. 1. to gather relevant information or material by patient effort, bit by bit; to find out. 2. to gather grain or other produce (often: left by reapers); to harvest.]
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In This Issue
Announcements & Alerts
In the News
GMO Activist Program
Winter Food Project
From our Blog
Community Board
Volunteer With Us!
Go Organic when you Shop!
Become a sponsor to have your ad posted HERE!
Email us for details.

The NOFA Organic Lawn and Turf Handbook details methods for growing and managing beautiful, healthy, organic turfgrass.

Are you involved with a conservation organization in your community? Hand out these attractive brochures and get the neighborhood talking! Sold in quantities of 50 or more, $.50 each.

Grab your copy of the Standards for Organic Land Care today!

Urban & Suburban Meadows addresses the problems caused by the extensive planting of non-native grass lawns across America.

Purchase your Introduction to Organic Lawns and Yards booklet to help you maintain a beautiful, healthy, and ecologically sounds lawn or garden!
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In an effort to get out important updates and notices in a timely manner, and because we have so much to offer, we are now sending out an abbreviated version of our Gleanings eNews in the middle of every month, as a compliment to our regularly scheduled Gleanings at the start of each month. Let us know what you think about this new system, and if you have any suggestions for how we send out emails in the future.  Thanks for reading!

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CT NOFA and OLC Events

Featured Events    


Getting Started in Organic Farming Conference

Saturday, January 28, 2012   

Connecticut Forest & Park Association 
16 Meriden Road  
Rockfall, CT  
8:30 to 4:00


Are you a new farmer who's just starting out, or an established farmer who wants to go organic?  Come to our Getting Started in Organic Farming Conference and learn the tricks of the trade from a group of talented professionals!  


Schedule for the Day:

  • 8:00-8:30 - Registration
  • 8:30-8:45 - Bill Duesing: Welcome and Introduction
  • 8:45-9:00 - Jim Little: Intro and history of CT Forests and Parks
  • 9:00-10:00 - Bryan O'Hara: Soil Management Techniques
  • 10:00-10:15 - BREAK
  • 10:15-11:15 - Dina Brewster: Planning for Profits - The Basics of a Farm Business Plan
  • 11:15-11:30 - Joe Bonelli: Crop Insurance
  • 11:30-11:45 - Other Resources
  • 11:45-12:00 - Attendee Intro
  • 12:00-1:00 - POTLUCK LUNCH
  • 1:00-2:00 - Shannon Raider: Getting Started in the Greenhouse
  • 2:00-3:00 - Jiff Martin and Jennifer McTiernan: Looking for Land?  Good!  We Think We've Got Some for You!
  • 3:00-4:00 - Duncan Cox: Getting Started in Organic Certification


$30 for CT NOFA members, $40 for non-members.  

Have you been farming for less than 10 years?  You may qualify for a scholarship.  We want to reach out to as many new farmers as possible! Click HERE for an application.


Click here for a printer-friendly registration form. Online registration available here.

To learn more check out our website here.  




Saturday, March 3, 2012
Manchester Community College
Manchester, CT
"Local and Organic since 1982"

Manchester Community College's "Green Team" will again be Co-sponsoring this unique Environmental Education Event at their campus. The Keynote speaker will be Jeffrey Smith, internationally known spokesperson on the health dangers of Genetically Modified Organisms (GMOs). Learn more about Jeffrey Smith here.


We now have sponsor and advertising opportunities posted for the Winter Conference. Click HERE to see how you can spotlight your business by becoming a sponsor and HERE to learn more about advertising opportunities!


There will be over 40 educational workshops offered. Take a peek at a few:

-Organic Seed vs. Monsanto: The Lawsuit Challenging -Patents on Seed - Attorney Daniel Ravicher, NYC

-Certified Organic Nutrient Dense Small Fruit  - Julie Rawson

  & Jack Kitteredge,  Many Hands Organic Farm, MA

-Wild Bees and Pollination - Dr. Kim Stoner of CT Ag Experiment


-Root Cellars & Food Storage - Chris Chaisson, Whole Farm

  Services, VT

-Nitrogen Management on Farms - Tom Morris, UConn Plant


-Science and Principles of Soil Microbiology - Joe Maggazi,

  Green Earth Agriculture

-Chickens - Brianne Casadei, Exec. Director Terra Firma Farm

-Better Choices in Rx, Cosmetics, Household Products - 

  Valerie Cookson-Botto

-Raising Garlic - Farmer Wayne Hansen, Wayne's Organic


-Honey Bees - Marina Marchese, Red Bee Honey

-Mushroom Growing on a Small Scale - Carol Brzozowy & Jim

  Peppin, Maggie's Farm

-Public Act 490 - Joan Nichols, CT Farm Bureau.   


There will be specific tracks for beginning farmers, winter food growers, winter food consumers, CSAs, transition towns, and Organic Land Care. The beginning farmers track is supported by the Beginning Farmer and Rancher Development Program of the National Institute of Food and Agriculture, USDA, Grant #2011-49400-30510. 


You will be able to shop from a local vendors & farmers market, listen or dance to live music with "Train Wreck Jerry", feast on a delicious "Pot Luck", check out in the Family "Play n Chill" Room", learn from live cooking demonstrations and much more.


We'd like you to be part of this big day.  Learn more about the Winter Conference here.


Additionally, the CT NOFA annual members meeting will be held at the Winter Conference this year.


For more info or to give us a hand volunteering contact: Teresa Mucci: or 203-888-5146.


Our Other Upcoming Events    
11th Annual Accreditation Course in Organic Land Care
New Haven, CT
February 15-17, and 21-22, 2012
(Snow Date:  February 23, 2012)
Be sure to register before January 24, 2012 to get your Early Bird Discounts! 

Charlestown, RI
February 27-29, March 1-2, 2012
(Snow Date; March 5)

NOFA Chapter Winter Conferences 

Six NOFA chapters have Winter Conferences and your membership will get you discounts at all of them.  Click here for a pdf with dates and details.  


Events Where we will be Tabling 


New England Grows

February 1-3, 2012

Boston, MA


How to Plan For a Bountiful Vegetable Garden 
Saturday, February 18, 2012
Common Ground High School
10:00 AM - 1:00 PM


CT Flower and Garden Show

February 23-26, 2012

CT Convention Center

Hartford, CT


Ecological Landscaping Association - 18th Annual Conference and Marketplace
March 7-8, 2012
Springfield, MA

Growing Fruit in a Healthy Orchard Ecosystem with Michael Phillips
March 9, 2012
Rockfall, CT

Soils and Compost Workshop
March 10, 2012
Common Ground High School

Starting Seedlings Workshop
March 17, 2012
Common Ground High School

Organic Gardening Workshop 
May 5, 2012
Common Ground High School
10:00 AM - 12:00 PM

For other area events check our our events listing page.

Announcements & Alerts 

Governor Malloy, for the second 

Gov. Malloy with CT NOFA member, farmer, and chair of the Working Lands Alliance (WLA), Terry Jones
year in a row, visited the Working Land Alliance's steering committee meeting in January. He spent nearly an hour being introduced to the organizations which are represented on the Alliance, answering questions, and talking about his commitment to agriculture, especially to farmland protection, bringing abandoned farmland back into production (and providing matching funds for that), and increasing local meat production. It is a tremendous opportunity for agriculture to have a Governor who cares about agriculture and is dedicated to building it up in our state.  



Join us!
We're are looking for a congenial, cat-tolerant part-time bookkeeper here at the CT NOFA office in Oxford, CT. Please email Deb for details.


2012 2011 farm and food guide cover Farm and Food Guide
We're getting a head start on next year's CT NOFA Farm & Food Guide, so please send in your confirmation form if you haven't yet. If you are interested in a listing, ad or sponsorship opportunities, email Deb here.


January 31: A Citizen's Assembly of Support for Family Farmers vs. Monsanto
Tuesday, January 31, 2011 @ 9:00 am
Southern District Court, New York City
Daniel Patrick Moynihan United States Courthouse
500 Pearl St.
New York, NY 10007-1312
We wish to assemble free and peaceful citizens outside the Manhattan District court in an effort to present the important message to family farmers that millions of Americans stand behind them as they seek their day in court.  Check out our blog for more information.


Free Screening and Discussion of Farmageddon Farmington High School Auditorium
10 Monteith Dr., Farmington CT
January 29, 2012
Movie: 3:00pm - 4:45pm
Discussion: 4:45pm - 5:30pm
Call Farmington Continuing Education for details - 860-404-0290


Spring Bulk Order - Order by January 31
Do you buy cover crop seed, fertilizers, mineral amendments, compost, potting soil, potato and allium seed? Would you like to save money on those items? If so, the Bulk Order might be perfect for you. Our suppliers include: Organic Growers Supply, Moose Tubers, Ideal Compost, Vermont Compost, Crop Production Services, Fertrell and more! Order in person at the NOFA/Mass Winter Conference, or postmark your envelope by Jan 31 to order by mail.
For more information, click here


2nd IFOAM International Organic Animal Husbandry
Deadline January 31, 2012: CALL FOR ABSTRACTS: 'Tackling
NOFA's Standards are part of the IFOAM family of standards
the Future Challenges of Organic Animal Husbandry' - Hamburg, Germany - September 12-14, 2012
 Do not miss the opportunity to share your knowledge on organic animal husbandry at the 2nd IFOAM International Organic Husbandry Conference! Papers will be selected based on the abstract submitted by January 31, 2012. Upon confirmation of the selection of the abstract, authors will be asked to submit a full paper.

For more information, including guidelines on how to present the abstract and final paper,  click here.


UConn Extension GAP (Good Agricultural Practices) School for Fruit and Vegetable Producers
This school is appropriate for Master Gardeners, CSAs, community gardens, school/institutional or restaurant gardens, and farmers who do not sell wholesale and/or to customers who might require a GAP audit, etc.

This CT GAP school will be comprehensive, providing farmers with more of the tools they need to develop a GAP food safety program. You will get some experience writing a plan as well. Two series of weekday sessions will be held at the Tolland County Extension Center in Vernon (Jan 25, 26, 27) and the New Haven County Extension Center in North Haven (Feb 1, 2, 3). Pre-registration is required. Each session will include lectures, handouts, a review of the pertinent audit items, and steps for farmers to take to achieve success in each audit section that pertains to their operation.

If you have questions or need additional information, please contact Diane Wright Hirsch at 203-407-3163 or by email or Candace Bartholomew at 860-570-9067 or by email.


Looking for Equipment?  We're looking for you!
Phase One of the URI Cooperative Extension's Equipment Bank Feasibility Study is underway. The goal of this Study is to identify available equipment, desired but unavailable equipment, and custom operators serving RI, MA, and CT. If you influence the equipment decisions on your farm, please fill out a short on-line survey here. If you are not a farmer but you provide custom operator services, please fill out the survey. If you are a farmer AND you provide custom operator services, please fill out the survey. If you are neither a farmer nor a custom operator but you KNOW a custom operator, please fill out the survey. If you would prefer a paper version, please contact Becca Buckler at 401-934-0842 or by email. This is a much-anticipated project, jointly funded by a USDA Beginning Farmer Grant (awarded to the RI Association of Conservation Districts and URI) and the RI Ag Partnership (through the generosity of the vanBuren Charitable Foundation). Your input will make this a success. Thanks for participating!  


Sustainable Food Service Management Course 

Manchester Community College (CT) is promoting a brand new course offering Sustainable Food Service Management designed by John Turenne, founder of Sustainable Food Systems, LLC.   


This course, one of the first of its kind in the nation, will be taught by John Turenne and assisted by Molly Devanney and will provide managers of restaurants, business cafeterias and school foodservice operations with the tools and techniques to become proficient in turning food programs into sustainable enterprises.  


Thursdays, 4 p.m.-6:50 p.m.  

January 19-May 14, 2012
3 credits; $466 plus course materials


To register or for additional information, contact Jayne Pearson



Showcase food from your farm at the Culinary Institute of America's Annual Leadership Awards Gala! 
CIA needs crops from local farmers to feature at their Awards Gala March 29, 2012 at the Marriott Marquis in Times Square, New York.  The Institute will pay a fair price for high quality local food, and the menu created from these crops will serve to feed over 600 foodservice movers and shakers.  Call us at 203.888.5146, email us, or read the letter we received to learn more. 
In the News

We are at the Forefront of the Effort to Label Genetically Modified Foods! We are literally at the table at the Capitol working on this alongside government officials.  Check out the Norwich Bulletin's story here. 


Get Involved!  Support the Local Farms, Food, and Jobs Act
The Local Farms, Food, and Jobs Act will improve federal farm bill programs that support local and regional farm and food systems. This legislation will help farmers and ranchers engaged in local and regional agriculture by addressing production, aggregation, processing, marketing, and distribution needs and will also assist consumers by improving access to healthy food and direct and retail markets.  And of utmost importance, this legislation will provide more secure funding for critically important programs that support family farms, expand new farming opportunities, and invest in the local agriculture economy.  CT NOFA was one of the organizations in Connecticut that signed on to fully endorse the bill.  Learn more about the bill and how you can get involved here.


Worm compost can suppress plant disease, regulate nutrients, research finds. The Cornell Chronicle reports that organic growers could soon have another weapon in their arsenal, courtesy of the humble worm. Cornell researchers have found that vermicompost -- the product of composting using various species of worms -- is not only an excellent fertilizer, but could also help prevent a pathogen that has been a scourge to greenhouse growers.  Read the full article here.  
GMO Activist Program

Calling all GMO Activists!

We are building a list of members interested in anti-GMO activism who can help send letters to the FDA or locally organize to advocate for state labeling regulation in which Rep. Roy and the Ledgelight Health District have led the way. Please e-mail Kristiane  if you'd like to be added to the list as we coordinate more GMO activism activities.


Winter Food Project

The mid-month recipe is potato pancakes, courtesy of our Executive Director, Bill Duesing, and his wife Suzanne.

Old Solar Farm Potato Pancakes and Applesauce

Latkes, or potato pancakes, are a traditional treat, prepared an infinite number of ways all over the world. How you make them depends on your heritage, personal tastes and willingness to experiment. The proportions of the ingredients vary too, depending on the variety of potato (and its moisture content), the relative humidity and altitude. I don't use any leavening in my latkes, but you can if you want them fluffier. 


Latkes at our place consist of unpeeled, raw potatoes (put through the grating blade of the food processor twice), onion and garlic (grated first with the regular blade), egg, fresh parsley, flour and freshly grated pepper. I don't put salt in the batter, but add a little at table, along with the requisite sour cream and homemade applesauce.


Check out recipes for the latkes and for the applesauce to go on them here.  


High Hill Orchard Potatoes

And if you want some nice potatoes to use for your latkes, consider buying from a farm in your area.  Here at the office we joined a winter CSA (community supported agriculture) program at High Hill Orchard in Meriden and got these delicious potatoes.  Peruse our Winter Food Project webpage to learn about winter farmers markets and CSA programs in your area.

From our Blog

Community Board       


Classifieds and Community Board notices are now maintained on our website.  If you have a notice you'd like to add, send it along to the office here. 

We Need Your Help!

This winter we have many upcoming events that require volunteer staffing.  If you like meeting great people and helping out in the community, consider volunteering for CT NOFA.  Our Organic Land Care Accreditation Course, Winter Conference, and many other tabling and outreach events are available and open to volunteers.  For more information, and to register as a volunteer, please email us

Go Organic when you Shop!  


Sign up for a NOFA credit card to support NOFA's important policy work to build a strong, regional organic food system.  It's easy! Just shop for things you buy every day and NOFA gets a $50 donation upon first use and at least 1% of all purchases.

If you have any stories, articles, notices, or suggestions for this newsletter, please send them along.

Many thanks,