Research, Education & Extension

ERS Atlas of Rural and Small-Town America

February 24, 2011

USDA’s Economic Research Service (ERS) recently released the Atlas of Rural and Small-Town America data set.  The tool, an interactive mapping application, provides spatial information (national to county-level) of socioeconomic factors  on four broad categories of : People— county demographic profiles including age, race/ethnicity, education, migration and immigration, household size and family composition (from the from […]

Organic Seed Alliance Releases “State of Organic Seed” Report

February 23, 2011

On February 16, 2011, the Organic Seed Alliance (OSA) released a survey-based report entitled State of Organic Seed: Advancing the Viability and Integrity of Organic Seed Systems.  The report serves as the first comprehensive analysis of the organic seed sector. Although the USDA National Organic Program (NOP) requires the use of organic seed when commercially […]

AFRI Awards to Study Effects of Climate Change on Agricultural and Forest Production

February 23, 2011

On Friday February 18, USDA’s National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA), through its Agriculture and Food Research Initiative (AFRI) funding opportunity, awarded three $20 million grants (over 5 years) to Coordinated Agriculture Projects (CAP) to study the effects of climate change on agriculture and forest production. Dr. Tim Martin, of the University of Florida […]

Take Action: Oppose Reckless Spending Cuts

February 22, 2011

 Call Your Senators       In the early hours of Saturday, February 19, the House of Representatives approved a government funding bill that would slash more than $60 billion from the federal budget for the last half of fiscal year 2011.  The bill (H.R. 1) unfairly targets programs that serve sustainable and organic farmers.  It makes steep […]

House Approves $60 Billion in Budget Cuts

February 21, 2011

In the early hours of Saturday, February 19, the House of Representatives approved on a near party-line 235-189 vote the government funding bill for the last half of fiscal year 2011.  The bill, H.R. 1, would slash roughly $60 billion from the federal budget relative to fiscal year 2010 spending.  Three Republicans voted against the […]

Obama USDA Budget Proposal a Mixed Bag

February 15, 2011

On Monday, February 14, President Obama submitted his budget request to Congress for Fiscal Year (FY) 2012.  For sustainable agriculture interests, the budget proposal is a mixed bag, with big cuts to farm bill conservation programs, though mostly good news on discretionary spending accounts. Mandatory Farm Bill Spending President Obama’s proposed budget calls for deep, […]

House GOP Funding Proposal Would Cut NSAC Priority Programs

February 12, 2011

Post updated 2/15/11 Following a revolt by some of their rank and file on Thursday, House Republican leaders on Friday night released their draft bill to cut government funding for the remainder of the fiscal year that end September 3 by a significantly larger amount then they planned for earlier in the week.  The bill […]

GMO Alfalfa Approved With No Restrictions? Stay Informed & Take Action

February 7, 2011

The Obama Administration’s recent decision to allow unlimited, non-restricted commercial planting of genetically-engineered (GE) alfalfa resistant to the herbicide commercially known as Roundup was a huge disappointment to the sustainable and organic agriculture community. With the sudden decision and resulting outcry from organic and consumer groups, including many of our member groups working on this […]

Upcoming USDA Program and Grant Deadlines

February 1, 2011

In case you haven’t kept track of all of the blogs we’ve posted about USDA conservation and competitive grant programs over the past few months, here is a handy summary of the USDA programs with upcoming enrollment or application deadlines: Sign-up Deadlines for USDA Conservation Programs: Environmental Quality Incentives Program (EQIP) Organic Initiative, administered by USDA’s […]

AFRI Releases RFA for Childhood Obesity Prevention Projects

January 27, 2011

On Wednesday, January 26, USDA’s National Institute for Food and Agriculture (NIFA) released a Request for Applications (RFA) for the Agriculture and Food Research Initiative’s (AFRI) Childhood Obesity Prevention Challenge Area.  AFRI has yet to release FY 2011 RFAs for the remaining four Challenge Areas: climate change, food safety, global food security, and sustainable bioenergy.  […]

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