The latest news:
February 13, 2020
Dear Small Fruit Grower:
Although progress has been made in the past 8 years in the ability to manage spotted wing drosophila (SWD), this pest remains a serious economic problem for small fruit growers in NY and around the country. The Cornell University berry research team needs your input as they apply for a large, multistate grant from the USDA.
The funds sought would help support research and extension efforts to develop and implement more sustainable management practices. Specifically, the grant would 1) help increase adoption of management practices already tested, including the use of economic models to improve decision making, and 2) evaluate alternative management approaches for SWD, including the release of parasitoids from SWD’s native lands and manipulation of SWD behavior using attractants and repellents.
The NY effort is led by Dr. Miguel Gomez, agricultural economist, and Dr. Greg Loeb, small fruit entomologist, both at Cornell, working closely with CCE and NYS Berry Growers Association and several collaborating NY berry growers.
They need your help in demonstrating to USDA that SWD remains a serious problem. Please take a few minutes to fill out this brief online survey on how SWD is affecting your business. Survey results from around the country will be compiled and included with the grant proposal. It should not take more than a few minutes of your time. Thank you very much.
To reach the survey, click on the following link:
NEW YORK STATE AGRICULTURE DEPARTMENT ANNOUNCES EFFORTS TO INCREASE ENVIRONMENTAL PRACTICES ON FARMS ACROSS THE STATEJanuary 23, 2020
Two Funding Programs Totaling $1.3 Million will Support Protection of New York’s Natural Resources and Help Farmers Maintain Standards for the NYS Grown & Certified Program
The New York State Department of Agriculture and Markets today announced the availability of $1.3 million for two programs to assist New York farmers increase environmental protections on farms across the State. Funds will support the conservation of water resources, improvements to nutrient management strategies, and help New York farmers in producing agricultural products at high environmental standards under the New York State Grown & Certified program.
Commissioner Ball said, “New York State continues to be a leader in environmental protections, including on its farms. I am proud of the support we have been able to provide to our Soil and Water Conservation Districts and to our farmers, which enables them to implement projects that prioritize our natural resources and ensure great care is taken for the land and waterways.”
High-Efficiency Agricultural Irrigation Water Management Systems
The Department is currently accepting applications for the $700,000 Irrigation Water Management Systems program. The program was created to help farmers make important improvements to their irrigation systems and improve water conservation, nutrient management strategies, and crop production yields.
High-efficiency systems, such as micro-irrigation systems (e.g. trickle, drip, and low-flow emitters) target water within the root zone of the crop. These systems preserve water resources and can be used to transport nutrients reducing the potential of runoff and groundwater contamination. Proper irrigation also enhances the quantity and quality of most crops.
Implementation of Agricultural Environmental Management (AEM) Plans on NYS Grown & Certified Farms
The Department is also making available $600,000 to support the implementation of Agricultural Environmental Management (AEM) plans, which is a cornerstone for participation in the New York State Grown & Certified program. By participating in the NYS Grown & Certified program, farmers are certified as enrolled in AEM and committed to producing products using the highest environmental standards in order to protect and improve New York’s natural resources, including the water quality.
Specifically, funding provided to on-farm projects under this program will help farmers
implement Conservation Practice Systems, which will improve soil health and manage nutrients and other agricultural inputs for greater crop availability. Although these Conservation Practice Systems have upfront costs, by implementing them, the farm will not only conserve natural resources but also improve efficiency and their economic bottom line.
The maximum award amount is $50,000 per farm. Districts are not limited to the number of applications that may be submitted, however, only one application per farm is permitted.
New York State Grown & Certified promotes New York's agricultural producers and growers who adhere to food safety and environmental sustainability standards. More than 3,000 farms are participating in the Grown & Certified program, representing over 750,000 acres of farmland.
The Irrigation Water Management System and AEM Plans on NYS Grown & Certified Farms programs are funded through the Oceans and Great Lakes Initiative, as part of the Environmental Protection Fund. New York State County Soil and Water Conservation Districts are eligible to apply for funding. Proposals must be submitted in the Grants Gateway by 4:30 p.m. on April 6, 2020.
New York State Soil and Water Conservation Committee Chair Dale Stein said, “These two distinct funding opportunities share the same goal in helping our farmers continue to implement innovative best management practices that protect the State’s natural resources while improving their competitiveness and profitability. These grants allow our farmers greater opportunity to conserve water, use smart nutrient management strategies and care for the soil.”
NYS Ag and Markets emergency management has provided a rainfall prediction map from the National Weather Service. Please find below as well as a link to NY EDEN's flood disaster website.
Cornell Cooperative Extension’s Regional Dairy Specialists, Betsy Hicks and Lindsay Ferlito, are working together on a research project, studying cow comfort in tie stall facilities. The project is funded through NY Farm Viability Institute and focuses on working with a group of farms who want to understand ways to optimize cow comfort at their farms. This video highlights two of these dairies and their experiences with the project.
CCE of Washington County announced the hire of Jessica Ziehm to aid farmers and area food producers in marketing their products utilizing the state’s Taste NY branding program. To read the full press release, please click on read more.
Last updated February 13, 2020