Keynote at MOFFA meeting: “Turning your dreams of healthy soil into reality”

At the upcoming MOFFA meeting (3 days away!), the keynote speaker, Dr. Moebius-Clune, the Director, Soil Health Division, USDA-NRCS, Washington, DC will speak on:
“Turning your dreams of healthy soil into reality.”

The keynote will be delivered from 9am-10am this Saturday, February 21, at the Maryland Department of Agriculture in Annapolis ( 50 Harry S. Truman Parkway).

Hope to see you there!

MOFFA Winter Meeting Schedule Available

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WINTER MEETING 2015
Emcee: Erroll Mattox
When: February 21 (snow date Feb. 28) 8:00 AM – 5:00 PM
Where: Maryland Dept. of Agriculture 50 Harry S. Truman Parkway, Annapolis
Only $5 for members; $20 for non-members
Hope to see you there!

Please note: Presentations and times are subject to change.

8:00-8:30    Registration, Coffee
8:30-8:45    Welcome & Announcements
Holly Heintz Budd, MOFFA Chair
8:45-9:00    Introduction to the United Nations International Year of Soils                              Tanya Tolchin, MOFFA Vice-Chair
9:00-            Keynote Speaker on Soil Health:
10:00           “Turning your Dreams of Healthy Soil into Reality”
                      Dr. Bianca Moebius-Clune, Ph.D.
Director, Soil Health Division, USDA-NRCS, Washington, DC
10:00-         Coffee Break
10:30           Silent Auction, Seed Swap, Display Tables, Book Sales Table                                      (Donated by Storey Publishing, 100% of proceeds for MOFFA)
                      Break into separate rooms

10:30-11:00
A) Connecting with Chefs & Distributors
Chris Miller, MOM’s Organic Market
Jonas Singer, Union Kitchen
Terrance Murphy, We’ll Juice Mobile Bar and La Fromagerie
B) Can Reduced Tillage and Cover Crop Residues be used to Manage Weeds in Organically Grown Vegetables?
Cerruti RR Hooks, Ph.D. & Guihua Chen, Ph.D., University of Maryland

11:15-noon
A) Pollinators in Peril
Kirsten Traynor, Ph.D.
University of Maryland and Bee World magazine
B) The Ethnic Crops Program at UDC
Yao M. Afantchao, Extension Agent, Ethnic and Specialty Crops Program, Cooperative Extension Service, CAUSES, University of the District of Columbia (UDC)

12:00-      Homegrown ‘Eat Local’ Potluck Lunch, Silent Auction, Seed Swap,
1:20          Networking
1:20-         Board Elections & Announcements
1:30

1:30-2:15
A) Outreach to Low & Moderate Income Shoppers at Farm Markets
Michael Tabor, Licking Creek Bend Farm, will screen his video and share questions & skepticism about current approaches to increasing access to fresh foods.
B) Integrating Horsepower & Livestock into the Diversified Farm
Tom Paduano & Sarah Rider, Owners and Farmers, Flying Plow Farm

2:15-     Silent auction winners announced, Seed Swap, Display Tables
2:30      Grab some coffee, Break into separate rooms

2:30-3:15
A) Farm to Faith: Growing Connections
Rev. Rebecca Iannicelli, United Methodist Church
Rev. Darriel Harris, Baltimore Food and Faith Project
Mike Klein, Good Fortune Farm
B) Organic Certification FAQ
Deanna Baldwin, Maryland Department of Agriculture. Certified Organic or considering certification? Deanna Baldwin will update you and answer questions about NOP interpretations and compliance with all of the rules.

3:15-4:00
A) Bio-Fuels
Jay Martin, Provident Organic Farm
B) Good Agricultural Practices
Shirley Micallef, Ph.D. & Sarah Allard, University of Maryland, will give updates on GAP research and practices for organic farming.

4:00-4:45
A) The Monsanto Experiment: What GMOs & Pesticides Are Doing to Human Health & the Environment
Alexis Baden-Mayer, Esq. Political Director, Organic Consumers Association
B) MOFFA Discussion Session
Holly Heintz Budd, Chair, MOFFA & Tanya Tolchin, Vice-Chair, MOFFA Are you new to MOFFA? Have you been a member for a long time? Join this session for a chance to meet others and share your interests, what you’re working on, and why you’re part of MOFFA.

4:45- 5:00 Wrap-up

Exploring Low Tech Food Dehydration to Increase Profits on Small Farms

Tanya Tolchin will be Exploring Low Tech Food Dehydration to Increase Profits on Small Farms at the MOFFA Winter Meeting on February 15, 2014.

Tanya says,

 “One of the challenges we face on our farm is that we often grow more produce and flowers than we can market during the peak season. We are hopeful that dehydrating some of our fresh produce and creating new products like kale chips, dried tomatoes, dried herbs and dried f lowers, will help our farm be more profitable and resilient in the changing marketplace. In early 2013, we received a “Farmer Grant” from USDA’s Sustainable Agriculture Research and Education program (SARE) to build and test the two commercial scale dryers on our farm, one solar and one electric.”

Tanya is one of the newest member of the MOFFA board and the Vice Chair.  She stepped in because she has dreams of MOFFA growing into a bigger and more  powerful entity like the great Maine Organic Farmers and Gardeners Association. She is hoping to help MOFFA win grants and attract a broader membership base. Tanya and her husband Scott Hertzberg grow vegetables and flowers at Jug Bay Market Garden just 20 miles from Washington DC and around the corner from Heron There Farm. She is a manager  of Israeli Harvest , a small business that supports farmers in Israel by selling organic olive oil and dates in the US. She writes about farming, parenting and Jewish life on her blog, On the Lettuce Edge, and else where. Prior to farming, she worked for Sierra Club in Washington DC for ten years on efforts to help protect national forests and build new strategic partnerships.

MOFFA, the Maryland Organic Food and Farming Association 23rd Annual Winter Meeting, is on Saturday February 15, 2014, from 8 am to 5:00 pm, at the Maryland Department of Agriculture Building, 50 Harry S. Truman Parkway in Annapolis.

Registration is $20 for non-members and $5 for members. Membership is $25 for one year or $45 for two years. Registration is at the door.

Ethnic Vegetable Production

Erroll Mattox from UMES – Maryland Cooperative Extension will be talking about ethnic vegetable production at the MOFFA Winter Meeting on February 15, 2014.

Demographics in America are changing and we can grow food for the world/ethnic market here in Maryland. Erroll will share some thoughts on what we can grow for the South Asian consumer and  insights on marketing.

Erroll is a Farm Management Specialist with the Small Farm Program at the University of Maryland Eastern Shore. He describes his job as “helping farmers make money”. He owned and operated an organic farm on The Shore for more than twenty years.

MOFFA, the Maryland Organic Food and Farming Association 23rd Annual Winter Meeting, is on Saturday February 15, 2014, from 8 am to 5:00 pm, at the Maryland Department of Agriculture Building, 50 Harry S. Truman Parkway in Annapolis.

Registration is $20 for non-members and $5 for members. Membership is $25 for one year or $45 for two years. Registration is at the door.

Maryland Organic Food and Farming Association to Hold Conference in Annapolis

Maryland Organic Food and Farming Association to Hold Conference in Annapolis

MOFFA, the Maryland Organic Food and Farming Association, announces its 23rd Annual Winter Meeting, on Saturday February 15, 2014, from 8 am to 5:00 pm, at the Maryland Department of Agriculture Building, 50 Harry S. Truman Parkway in Annapolis.

There will be Information for farmers and gardeners in search of new ideas, techniques, & inspiration, as well as networking opportunities for consumers and distributors looking for good sources of local, organic food.

MOFFA Chairperson Holly Budd says, “I am looking forward to the Panel Discussion on GMO and Food Safety Issues, Organic Food Justice Discussion, an update cow share and raw milk legislation in Maryland, and learning more about farming techniques and research from other organic farmers and researchers.”

Presentations, Panels and Workshops Include: 

  • Panel Discussion GMO/Food Safety Issues Exciting News in State politics moderated by Sophia Maravell, Brickyard Educational Farm.  Panelists include: Alexis Baden-Mayer Organic Consumer’s Association, Darla Eaton, Southern Exposure Seed Exchange, MD Delegate Ariana Kelly, Montgomery County, MD Sen. Karen Montgomery, Montgomery, Colin O’Neil, Center for Food Safety.
  • Panel Discussion:  Organic Food Justice Panelists: Carrie Vaughn, Claggett Farm, Lavette Sims, Capitol Area Food Bank. Greg Bowen, Hub and Spoke Program for SMADC

Erroll Mattox from UMES – MD Cooperative Extension will be talking about ethnic vegetable production

Tanya Tolchin: Exploring Low Tech Food Dehydration to Increase Profits on Small Farms.

Mike Haigwood, PA Bowen Farm, “Grassfed and Beyond” – Mike recently returned from Australia where he was studying permaculture and he will include some of that in his presentation.

Maryland Green Registry A good program to share and improve green practices for your farm and great tool for consumers too

Good Agricultural Practices (GAP) Update on the Organic/GAP University research and GAP training session

Maryland Department of Agriculture Organic Program presentation

Tyler Brown Real Food Farm. Urban farming collective The Farm Alliance of Baltimore

Research Talks by Extension and UMD Researchers:

  • Buchanan, A., G. Chen, L. Hunt and C.R.R Hooks. 2014. Using cover crops for pest suppression in crookneck squash.  Presented by Amanda Buchana
  • Chen, G., A. Buchanan, R. Weil and C.R.R. Hooks. 2014.  Integrating reduced or no tillage systems with cover cropping for organic vegetable productions.  Presented by Guihua Chen.

Attendees are encouraged to bring a dish to share for the potluck lunch, one of the highlights of the meeting.

Attendees can bring seeds to exchange with the other participants in the MOFFA Seed Swap.

There will be a silent auction.  Members may bring display materials; table space is available in exchange for silent auction item donations.

Registration is $20 for non-members and $5 for members. Membership is $25 for one year or $45 for two years. Registration is at the door. For more information, go to http://www.marylandorganic.org or contact Holly Heintz Budd at 443-975-4181

Maryland Organic Food and Farming Association (MOFFA) was established in 1991 as a non-profit organization. MOFFA strives to build a sustainable network of individuals and organizations that support small farms, family gardens and ecologically sound businesses

MOFFA WINTER MEETING 2014 SCHEDULE

TIME

Room  A

Room B

8:00-8:30

Registration

8:30 -8:45

Welcome and Announcements/Holly Budd MOFFA Chair

8:45-9:00

Laura Armstrong of MDE, Julie Oberg MDA Maryland Green Registry A good program to share and improve green practices for your farm and great tool for consumers too.

9:00-9:30

 Shirley Micallef: update on GAP research and organic by Shirley Micallef, University of MD

9:30-9:45

Coffee Break, Silent Auction, Seed Swap Break into separate rooms

9:45-10:30 Buchanan, A., G. Chen, L. Hunt and C.R.R Hooks. 2014. Using cover crops for pest suppression in crookneck squash.
Presented by Amanda Buchana
Shirley Micallef, Donna Pahl:  Pre harvest organic production and GAP
10:30-11:15 Chen, G., A. Buchanan, R. Weil and C.R.R. Hooks. 2014.  Integrating reduced or no tillage systems with cover cropping for organic vegetable productions.
Presented by Guihua Chen.
Shirley Micallef, Donna Pahl:  Post harvest organic and GAP
11:15-12:00 Mike Haigwood, PA Bowen Farm, “Grassfed and Beyond” – Mike recently returned from Australia where he was studying permaculture and he will include some of that in his presentation! Deanna Baldwin, MDA Organic Certification FAQ.  Certified Organic or considering certification? Deanna Balwin will update you and answer questions about NOP interpretations, and compliance with all of the rules.
12:00-1:20

Potluck Lunch, Silent Auction, Seed Swap, Networking

1:20- 1:30

Board Elections and Announcements

1:30-2:30

Panel Discussion: GMO/Food Safety Issues Exciting News in State politics  

Moderated by Sophia Maravell, Brickyard Educational Farm

Alexis Baden-Mayer Organic Consumer’s Association
Darla Eaton, Southern Exposure Seed Exchange
MD Delegate Ariana Kelly, Montgomery County
MD Sen. Karen Montgomery, Montgomery      Colin O’Neil, Center for Food Safety

2:30-2:45

Last Chance for Silent Auction, Seed Swap, Grab Some Coffee, Break into separate rooms

2:45-3:30 Tanya Tolchin: Exploring Low Tech Food Dehydration to Increase Profits on Small Farms. Liz Retzig Update cow share and raw milk legislation in Maryland
3:30-4:15 Erroll Mattox from UMES – MD Cooperative Extension will be talking about ethnic vegetable production Panel Discussion:  Organic Food Justice Panelists: Carrie Vaughn, Claggett Farm, Lavette Sims, Capitol Area Food Bank. Greg Bowen, Hub and Spoke Program for SMADC
4:15-5:00 Tyler Brown Real Food Farm. Urban farming collective The Farm Alliance of Baltimore

Is Your Farm Climate-Ready? Best Practices for Managing Climate Risk on Your Farm

Laura Lengnick
Laura Lengnick, Director, Sustainable Agriculture Program, Department of Environmental Studies, Warren Wilson College, will present: Is Your Farm Climate Ready? Best Practices for Managing Climate Risk on Your Farm at the MOFFA Winter Meeting, on February 16, 2013, from 8 to 5.

Are you prepared to manage the increased weather variability and extremes that are currently underway and predicted to intensify in the coming years as our planet warms?  Over the next 10 to 15 years, projected changes in precipitation and temperature patterns will increase water and pest management challenges and the potential for crop failure.

Laura Lengnick will present a new way of thinking about climate risk and offers some best practices for managing climate risk challenges on your farm, at the  MOFFA Annual Winter Meeting.

The  event is February 16, 2013, at the MD Dept. of Agriculture Bldg., Annapolis MD  it will run from 8 to 5. Laura  Lengnick will speak from 3:35 to 4:30.

Laura serves as the Director of the Sustainable Agriculture Program, in the Department of Environmental Studies at Warren Wilson College, a small undergraduate college near Asheville, NC offering a liberal arts education through a triad of academics, work and service.  Since joining the Warren Wilson faculty in 2002, Laura has been actively involved in sustainable agriculture advocacy in North Carolina: she is currently on the Carolina Farm Stewardship board of directors and is a past president and board member of the Appalachian Sustainable Agriculture Project.  Laura advises and teaches in several community-based sustainable agriculture education programs and works with a number of citizens groups on issues around sustainable food systems, sustainable resource use and resilient community redesign.  She brings to this work 25 years of research, teaching and public policy experience in soil quality and sustainability assessment, sustainable agriculture systems, and sustainable farm management.

Trained as a soil scientist, Laura’s work in sustainable production systems research at the Beltsville Agriculture Research Center was nationally recognized with a USDA Secretary’s Honor Award in 2000.  She has federal agriculture policy expertise gained through work experiences as a U.S. Senate staffer, as a research scientist serving in the Executive Branch of the federal government, and as a private consultant and lobbyist advocating for sustainable and organic farmers in the U.S. Congress.  While on sabbatical in 2011/12 as a visiting scientist on the USDA National Program Staff, Laura researched best practices for adapting agriculture to climate change as a lead author of the recently released USDA Report “Climate Change and U.S. Agriculture: Effects and Adaptation”.  Laura’s work on the report included a focus on identifying effective practices for farmers faced with managing the increased variability in temperature and rainfall, extreme weather events and novel pest pressures associated with the climate change impacts currently underway in the U.S.

Click here to find more details about MOFFA Annual Winter Meeting.

What will new FDA Food Safety Rules mean for small, local, and organic farmers?

Demeter  at the Maryland Department of Agriculture Building, where the Maryland Organic Food and Farming Association  Annual Winter meeting will be held on February 16, 2013, from 8 to 5.
Demeter, Greek Goddess of Agriculture, at the Maryland Department of Agriculture Building, where the Maryland Organic Food and Farming Association Annual Winter Meeting will be held on February 16, 2013, from 8 to 5.

The MOFFA Annual Winter Meeting is February 16, 2013, at the MD Dept. of Agriculture Bldg., Annapolis MD  it will run from 8 to 5. The event includes a panel in the afternoon, from 1:40 to2:40 p.m., to discuss the new FDA Food Safety Rules, and what they mean for small, local, and organic farmers.   Click here to find more details about MOFFA Annual Winter Meeting.

What will new FDA Food Safety Rules mean for small, local, and organic farmers?

Find out how the proposed rules could affect your growing, harvesting, on farm processing and post-harvesting handling practices.  Find out what new labeling and record keeping requirements you may have to meet for sales on farm, at farmers markets, and to retailers and wholesalers.  Learn about exemptions from certain requirements.

Presenter:

Ariane Lotti, Assistant Policy Director, National Sustainable Agriculture Coalition

Panelists:

Mike Tabor, Licking Creek Bend Farm, Needmore PA and Takoma Park, MD

and

Deanna Baldwin, Program Manager, Food Quality Assurance, Maryland Department of Agriculture

Ariane Lotti,

Ariane coordinates NSAC’s policy campaigns including organic and food safety issues.

She holds a B.A. and a Master of Environmental Management from Yale University.  She has served as the Policy Director for the Organic Farming Research Foundation.  She is a published author, and has worked on and conducted research on organic and conventional farms in the US and Europe.

Mike Tabor

Since 1972, Michael Tabor has been producing local fresh food for DC area residents of mixed income groups using organic methods.   Mike has also been active in many causes to advance environmental and social justice, including access to healthy local food for inner city populations.

Deanna Baldwin

Deanna is responsible for the Maryland Organic Certification Program as well as other grading and certification programs, including Fruit and Vegetable Grading, Egg Grading, and Good Agricultural Practices/Good Handling Practices Certification.  Deanna has a broad perspective on issues of food safety and local and organic production practices across Maryland.

Fall MOFFA Event a Great Success

It was a beautiful day at the Pasture Party at the P. A. Bowen Farmstead!

Great food and music, informative educational exhibits, and lots of fun. Enjoy our slide show from the day:

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Our next event is the MOFFA Winter Meeting
February 16, 2013, at the Maryland Department of Agriculture, Annapolis, Maryland