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Putting New 2008 Farm Bill Programs to Work for Producers
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Putting New 2008 Farm Bill Programs to Work for Producers


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  • Dairy farm in Chippewa Co: 300 acres of cropland, 400 acres of woods, 400 cows and he’s thinking of expanding to 600
  • Richard de Wilde, Harmony Valley, organic vegetable farm
  • Randy Schmidt owns a CAFO and farms 6000 acres in Door County
  • Traditionally organic farmers had to compete with everybody else for EQIP funds
  • Share brochure information Explain CSA model Talk briefly of the transition to agro-forestry
  • Just for producers or groups of producers (including co-ops) Mid-tier value chain, read: transparent regional supply network – made to strengthen the profitability and competitiveness of small and mid-scale farmers
  • Transcript

    • 1. Putting New Farm Bill Programs to Work for Producers Bridget Holcomb Associate Policy Director Michael Fields Agricultural Institute
    • 2. Outline • Conservation Stewardship Program • Environmental Quality Incentives Program (EQIP) Organic Initiative • Sustainable Agriculture Research and Education • Value Added Producer Grants • Other resources
    • 3. Conservation Stewardship Program “You’re saving your soil, you’re costs are cheaper, and you’re going to make more money in the end. You’re a fool not to be in this program.” Bob Bernier
    • 4. Conservation Stewardship Program • For farmers and private forest land owners • Rewarded for existing conservation practices and new practices • 5 year contract with NRCS • Payments – cropland or pastureland: $10 to $40 per acre – forest land: $2 to $24 per acre – capped at $40,000 per year • Long application!
    • 5. Conservation Stewardship Program Previous On-Farm Conservation Practices: • Same-day incorporation of applied manure and compost • Cover crops • Shrub rows for beneficial insect habitat • Waste oil recycling Conservation Improvements through CSP: • Pasture diversity • Habitat for beneficial insects and wildlife “We try to continually take on little conservation projects, and CSP gives us that extra push to get us going.” Richard de Wilde
    • 6. Conservation Stewardship Program Photo by Agri-View “It’s about protecting the environment for the next generation. My dad did that for me, and I want to do that for my kids. Establishing good conservation is the right thing to do.” Randy Schmidt Previous On-Farm Conservation Practices: • Minimum-till and no-till • Minimum residue application • Gypsum soil amendment to reduce runoff Conservation Improvements through CSP: • Crop tissue sampling for nitrogen • Variable rate technology for planting and nutrient management
    • 7. Conservation Stewardship Program Resources: • cstp.html • Local NRCS office
    • 8. EQIP Organic Initiative • EQIP now has an organic provision • Both existing organic farmers and those transitioning to organic • Cost share for organic conservation practices – 75% cost share – 90% for socially disadvantaged farmers and beginning farmers • $20,000/yr cap, total cap of $80,000 over six years • For more information: – Pat Murphy, 608-662-4422 x 258 – Matt Otto 608-662-4422 x245
    • 9. Sustainable Agriculture Research and Education
    • 10. Sustainable Agriculture Research and Education • For more information: – – Diane Mayerfeld, 608.262.8188
    • 11. Value Added Producer Grants Sassy Cow Creamery: working capital for a small, start-up organic and conventional milk processor and bottler project
    • 12. Value Added Producer Grants Deirdre Birmingham: feasibility study leading to the development of the business, operations, and marketing plans necessary to successfully produce and market hard apple cider in the Southern Wisconsin region.
    • 13. Value Added Producer Grants Agrecol: working capital to add value to native seeds by processing them into branded mixtures.
    • 14. Value Added Producer Grants • What is a value added product? – Changed in physical state – Organic crops – Grass-fed livestock – Locally produced and marketed foods – Mid-tier value chains • Up to $100,000 for business plans and feasibility studies • Up to $300,000 for working capital • Long application!
    • 15. …and one Wisconsin Program Buy Local Buy Wisconsin Program • Grants up to $50,000 to connect Wisconsin producers with Wisconsin consumers • Wisconsin Local Food Marketing Guide: a step by step guide for local food producers interested in entering local food markets • eting/val-add/directmktg/blbw.jsp; or call Teresa Engel at 608-224-5101
    • 16. Resources • Agricultural Innovation Center • Building Sustainable Places guide  Grassroots Guide to the Farm Bill s/grassrootsguide/
    • 17. Bridget Holcomb Associate Policy Director Michael Fields Agricultural Institute 608-256-1859