Finally … help choosing a certifier.
Over a year ago we began working with the Organic Farming Research
Foundation to survey organic certifiers in the U.S. about their
operations. What was their fee structure? What types and sizes of
farms did they typically serve? What special services did they offer?
What states did they operate in?
We took the answers to these questions and developed The
New Farm Guide to U.S. Organic Certifiers. About two-thirds
of U.S. certifiers are now listed in the Guide, which is the only
qualitative guide to certifiers in the country. I’m delighted
by it. You can browse all certifiers, compare two certifiers side
by side, or browse for certifiers by particular criteria. Please
check it out--and use the discussion
forum connected with it to comment on how we can improve
it. We hope you’ll also take the time to comment on your own
experiences, positive and negative, with certifiers. The more people
who use the guide and comment on certifiers, the more encouragement
we will give certifiers to join the listing and stay current, upgrade
their services, and generally create a more open competitive environment
around selecting certifiers. Check
the guide out now.
Rodale Institute NEWS! NewFarm.Org
is brought to you by The Rodale Institute, and as many of you know,
The Institute is a well-known research and training organization
for organic and sustainable agriculture. One of the things we do
each year is sponsor a number of field days, and coming up on July
22, on our farm here in eastern PA, is a field day featuring research
and practical advice on promoting mycorrhizal fungi populations
that can increase the fertility of your soil, and beneficial soil
fauna (from microarthropods to ground beetles) that can help manage
The event is free and open to the public,
but pre-registration is required--and if you want a lunch you'll
need to pre-order it for $10. To register (and learn more about
the event) click
You may not have heard about another Institute
web site, kidsregen.org--a
fun, colorful, lively web site for children about gardening and
the natural world. Each year KidsRegen.org sponsors an Organic School
Garden Awards contest to honor outstanding organic school gardens.
Grades K-12, including home schools, can win a top prize of $1,000.
Deadline for entries is October 31, 2005. If you know a school that
values organic gardening, help the reap some cash prizes and get
a little recognition. Click
here for the complete rules and details.
Organic no-till research spreads
like beneficial plague. A bad metaphor, but you
get the idea: Our no-till roller/crimper research has caught the
attention of lots of folks, and Michigan State University has become
a hotbed of that research. Their first year results are nothing
short of amazing. They drilled feed-grade soybeans into knocked-down
cover crops of cereal rye and hairy vetch, and their yields were
50 percent higher than the average soybean yields in the area for
Now, one of the MSU researchers has moved on to Illinois, and he’ll
be experimenting with an identical roller there, with different
soils and crops. Check
out Laura Sayre’s article to read about these
developments, and join the no-till discussion forum
to ask questions and learn from others.
New student farms added to directory:
Three new student farms have been added to our bulging
directory of farms. Check them out, and join
ed forums to see what educators and students are saying
about student farms and sustainable ag programs. By the way, we
got a request from one doctoral student at UC Davis to set up a
repository where we can post electronic documents that you think
would help people establish sutainable ag education programs on
their campuses--excel spreadsheets, PDF documents, Word documents,
etc. We CAN do it and will do it if you send your valuable documents
programs need your support today!
Farmer fave's--SARE, ATTRA and the Organic Transitions Program--face
crippling budget cuts in a number of states. Act
before June 13!
Coming in the next month: We
have around 20 articles on farmers and farming in Senegal, West
Africa, which we’ve been wanting to feature for some time.
Finally, we’ll begin our series on farming in Senegal in two
weeks. In four weeks we’ll add a “weed page”—a
repository of articles, farm profiles and research on weeds which
will include the latest results of our research collaborations with
Penn State and with the Agricultural Research Service station in
Beltsville, Maryland. The weed page will also feature a discussion
forum where we hope all of you will join in to talk about weed problems,
weed management successes and more.
Chris Hill, Executive Editor
Even the sheep at Camphill Village Kimberton Hills, in southeastern
PA, find themselves in a supportive community in tune with the natural
rhythms of life.
See below for more.
The butter master
renews the countryside
By choosing to locate its headquarters and butter plant in rural
Wisconsin, Organic Valley has had a huge impact on several small
towns and the folks who live there.
See below for more.
Thanks again to all of you who've donated money to help us restart
the Organic Price Index. We now have:
We'll be adding current prices starting next week, and this money
will allow us to keep going for several months while we work to
resolve our funding problem. The total amount needed to keep the
OPX alive and well for a year is $120,000. Please donate now to
keep your prices coming.
here to donate.
No-till organic spreads to Michigan,
No-till rolls on through the Midwest, picking up enthusiasts wherever
See at left for more.
An urgent message to CSA farmers about how to keep from overwhelming
their members with summer squash.
See below for more.
NEW FARM BOOKSTORE
Been to our bookstore
lately? Check out featured titles on farmstead cheesemaking, saving
America's endangered foods, corn growing in Africa, and the founding
of the Camphill movement. PLUS:
by the sea
Poet, organic farmer and NOFA-New York governing
council president Scott Chaskey talks with New Farm about farming,
writing, soil, CSAs, the Organic Rule and his new book, This
Common Ground, a lyrical reflection on 16 years managing
a CSA on Long Island's South Fork.
DOUBLE REVIEW: A
World of Presidia AND Values of Agrarian Landscapes
with a view
Two handsome books offer nourishment for the
Have a book recommendation for us? Let us know
by emailing senior writer Laura Sayre at firstname.lastname@example.org.