Category Archives: Technical Assistance/Funding

Livestock Compass is Live!

Our new spreadsheet tool designed to help livestock producers calculate their cost of production and marketing…and then make strategic management decisions to improve farm profits…is now available.

Eventually, Livestock Compass will be housed at a new CompassToolbox.com website but that has not been built yet! For now it is available at www.veggiecompass.com

Jim Munsch and John Hendrickson will be doing a training on this tool at the Southern Sustainable Ag Working Group Conference in 2019. Would your group like a training on the tool?

Beginning Farmer School January 11-13, 2019

Planning a small business growing and selling fresh vegetables? Join us for the 2019 Wisconsin School for Beginning Market Growers, January 11-13. Registration is now open! A limited number of scholarships are available. Click here for more information or to register or contact John Hendrickson (jhendric@wisc.edu)

 

Iowa County Farm Tour and Gulf Seafood Monday October 9, 2017

Join Iowa County’s Uplands Farmer-led watershed group for a cover crops farm tour and seafood lunch

  • 9am         Fazenda Boa Terra produce farm (Lidia Dungue and John Middleton) 6580 State Rd  23, Spring Green
  • 10:15am   Walk to Michael Dollans’ inter-seeded cover crops, State Rd 23
  • 11:15am    Uplands Cheese dairy farm (Scott and Illana Mericka and Andy and Caitlin Hatch), 5023 State Rd 23 N, Dodgeville

The farm tour will be followed by lunch at Uplands Cheese Farm.

Come discuss cover crop practices for fresh market produce, grain and dairy systems. See no-till drilling irrigation, manure management, and other strategies to conserve soil and nutrients. Then enjoy brats and seafood caught by fishermen in the Gulf – whose challenges with nutrient build-up and biological die-off in the Gulf Dead Zone we seek to help through out conservation practices.

There is no fee, but please RSVP by Thursday, October 5 at http://bit.ly/covercroptourlunch or contacting Margaret Krome, Michael Fields Agricultural Institute (608) 283-1440, mkrome@sbcglobal.net or Gene Schriefer, Iowa County Extension (608) 930-9850.

Co-sponsored by: MFAI, Dairy Grazing Apprenticeship, Iowa County Farm Bureau, Iowa County Land Conservation Department, The McKnight Foundation, MOSES, Organic Valley, Savanna Institute, Southwest Badger RC&D, UW Extension, DATCP, UW-CIAS

 

Making More From Milk!

Have you ever thought about adding value to the milk you produce on your farm? This May, join with other farmers to learn about value-added dairy, including visits to retails that specialize in specialty cheeses, and visits to farms that are making cheese and ice cream from their milk. Cow, sheep and goat milk dairies and cheese makers are featured, especially those producing artisan and raw milk cheeses from grass-fed animals.

This is three full days of on-site expert introduction to value-added dairy. The event fee of $695 includes:

  • 3 farm visits,
  • 3 processor visits,
  • 5 retailer visits,
  • 5 seminars with industry experts,
  • 3 lunches,
  • ground transportation to visits,
  • Translation to Spanish.

There are also optional cheese making opportunities on Thursday May 4.

  • Option one – make cheese with an award-winning cheese maker in a small factory setting. $425.
  • Option two – make cottage cheese with professionals from the University of Wisconsin. $525.

The event runs Monday May 1 at 8 am to Wednesday May 3 at 3:30. Seminars are offered in Madison, WI and tours are concentrated in the Fox Valley.

Register at https://fs3.formsite.com/8onTH0/form1/index.html

For more details on the program, go to http://globalcow.com/making-more-from-milk/

Contact Karen@globaldairyoutreach.com to register. 866-267-2879

AppleTalk 2017

AppleTalk: Where Apple Growers Share IPM Ideas                   Now is the time to register for AppleTalk.

We have scheduled a special AppleTalk call with Amaya Atucha, University of Wisconsin Horticulture, to discuss tree phenology and winter injury, breaking dormancy, and nutrition needs for trees. We will also discuss green tip disease management on this call. Unlike our regular Tuesday calls, this call will be on Friday, March 31, to align with Amaya’s availability. The regular AppleTalk season will begin sometime in late April on our regular Tuesday schedule.

What’s new for 2017?

  • 18 conference calls to accommodate a longer season.
  • Registration is now online.
  • AppleTalk podcast. We need your help on this one. The available conference-call services offer either a stream that requires a flash player (not smart phone compatible) or generates a large media file which has to be downloaded. Both of these options are not friendly for smart phones. We are investigating low-cost opportunities that could allow us to take the downloaded file and turn it into a podcast that could be streamed or downloaded. This is not our area of expertise and if you know of a good program or have some ideas, let us know! This seems to be an area where the conference-call technology has not caught up with the times.
  • 2017 fees are set at $150. When AppleTalk began in 2006 it was sustained through several major grants from the US EPA and USDA. Sacia Orchards helped us meet our budget for the last two seasons. Please thank them if you see them. We anticipate this modest increase and the online registration will secure the budget we need to keep improving the quality of AppleTalk and the content we deliver to you. This business expense pays for itself many times over – invest in your management.

2016 AppleTalk participation survey
https://ipminstitute.org/wp-content/uploads/2016/10/AppleTalk-2016-Survey-Responses.pdf

Please let us know if you have any questions, comments or concerns. We would love to hear from you. Please contact Peter Werts, pwerts@ipminstitute.org, (608) 232-1410 x1002 or Thomas Bernard, tbernard@ipminstitute.org.

Open Source Food Safety

Announcing new open source hub for food safety information

processed cold products

Photo: R. Stone

Open Source Food Safety has launched a new initiative and website opensourcefoodsafety.org for the benefit of regional food systems. Food safety is important to everyone, but the information food-related businesses need to make safe products isn’t always affordable or easy to access. The Open Source Food Safety Initiative is setting out to change that.

A collaboration between the University of Wisconsin-Madison Center for Humanities, Underground Food Collective, Sarapis Foundation, and open source software developers, the Open Source Food Safety Initiative aims to make information about food safety free, publicly available, and easy to understand. This project emerged out of a Kickstarter-funded campaign in 2014 that has raised $49,000 to date, and received national press on NPR’s Salt, Eater, and The New Food Economy for its innovative approach to helping food businesses navigate the complex world of food safety regulation.

Normally, this information is copyright-protected and food businesses have to pay consultants tens of thousands of dollars to access it. To date, Open Source Food Safety Initiative collaborators have assisted over 20 restaurants and plants with their HACCP plans, thereby bringing the cost of starting a business down and generating for them an estimated quarter million dollars of value.

Now, the initiative’s new website is taking its approach to collaboration around food safety information to the next level. This new hub, www.opensourcefoodsafety.org, hosts Creative Commons-licensed Hazard Analysis of Critical Control Points (HACCP) plans and invites people to share their own plans, commenting on existing plans and adapt plans for their own businesses. The free, familiar, and easy to use online tools makes all this (and more) possible.

“We think this is an incredibly innovative way to help small processors tackle food safety issues,” said Jonny Hunter, project founder and Underground Food Collective co-owner. “We hope processors will not only use this information, but contribute back – strengthening the overall safety of our food system.”

“This project is a delicious example of how widely used free software tools like Google Docs and open source collaboration techniques can be used to improve our food system,” said Devin Balkind, founder of Sarapis Foundation. “This effort not only lowers the cost of starting businesses while increasing the availability of awesome food. It also invites people to imagine other ways food producers can use collaborative technologies to work together and transform their industry.”

Sharing HACCP plans is just the beginning. The Open Source Food Safety Initiative aims to provide food businesses with multi-media guides to navigating food safety regulation, including step-by-step videos that document the process of validating and verifying HACCP plans, interviews with food scientists, and blog posts tackling common food safety issues faced by processors. Their website also hosts a forum for discussion around food safety issues.

Those interested in starting or building a food business, strengthening knowledge infrastructure for regional food systems, or simply invested in the safety of our food system can visit www.opensourcefoodsafety.org to use and modify food safety plans featured on the site, and can share their own food safety plans with others as open source documents by emailing info@opensourcefoodsafety.org

For project updates, subscribe to the Open Source Safety Initiative’s blog, join their Google Group, or check out their Facebook page

Workshop on the Driftless Karst Landscape August 25

Gene Schriefer and Paul Ohlrogge invite you to learn more about karst and conservation. They write:

Algae blooms in Florida and Lake Erie, Des Moines suing three northwestern Iowa counties for nitrate contamination, brown water advisories in Kewaunee County, whether the finger is pointed at urban runoff, failing septic systems or agriculture, water quality issues are making front page news.
Southwest Wisconsin has an abundant water resource. In Iowa County, this resource has been mapped. With information we can make informed decisions about how to utilize this resource wisely while ensuring that this supply of safe, clean water remains available use and enjoyment for future generations. While the data was collected in Iowa County, we share many similar karst features with our neighboring counties in the Driftless Region.

We have invited several experts to explain what we know and answer question about land use that positively and negatively impacts our water.

We’d like to invite you to attend a workshop on “Conservation in Karst Landscapes” on August 25, in Dodgeville. The main objectives for this program are:

  • Gain a basic understanding of the bedrock geology of Southwestern Wisconsin, how the geology increases the risk of groundwater contamination; gain a basic understanding of how highly permeable soils (sands) are a risk factor for groundwater contamination
  • Understand the tools local counties are using to determine depth to bedrock and map higher risk areas, and examine the strategies they have used to protect the groundwater resource.
  • Explain how to use field observations and mapping tools to locate karst features and be able to identity common karst features in the field.

 

PROGRAM AGENDA
UW-Extension Conservation in Karst Landscapes

9:30: Welcome and Overview of the day

9:35: Understanding Karst and Karst Issues in Southwest Wisconsin
Understanding water movement in Sandy Aquifers—Madeline Gotkowitz,
Geologist, WGNHS

10:25: The groundwater resources of Iowa County—Paul Ohlrogge, UWEX CRD

11:05 Depth to Bedrock Mapping Techniques & Sinkholes in SW WI- Dave
Hart, WGNHS

12:05: Working Lunch: Mapping shallow bedrock: what we’ve learned -Eric
Cooley, UW Discovery Farms
Recommendations from the Northeast Wisconsin Karst Task Force Report
Kevin Erb, UW Extension

1 pm: Local experiences with Soil Health: What farmers can do to increase
infiltration and reduce nutrient losses— Gene Schriefer, UWEX Ag

1:45 Break

1:55 Optional Field Tour: Identifying Karst Features in the Field/Quarry trip

UW-Extension
Iowa County HHS
303 W. Chapel Street
Dodgeville, WI 53533
Phone: (608)930-9850
E-mail: gene.schriefer@ces.uwex.edu

9:00 a.m. August 25
Iowa County Health & Human Service Building,
303 W. Chapel Street, Dodgeville, WI

Registration—$20—checks payable to UWEX (due August 19)

Cooperative Board Leadership Roundtable

Join us in Madison on August 4th
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MARK YOUR CALENDARS AND REGISTER NOW!

As the business world grows increasingly more complex, an effective board is critical to cooperative’s success. How do board leaders balance responding to changing conditions while remaining focused on the long-term goals and needs of the cooperative? How might your board improve performance to better meet the needs of its members?Join other cooperative board leaders on August 4th in Madison, WI, to share challenges and solutions that your cooperative board is facing. The Cooperative Board Leadership Roundtable is a flexible and interactive forum that will focus on the following topics:

  • Role of the board chair and other leadership positions
  • Facilitating effective meetings
  • Strategies for good decision making processes and developing a more efficient board
  • CEO review and succession planning
  • Best practices in board leadership.

Don’t miss out on this opportunity to network with your cooperative board peers!

Cooperative Board Leadership Roundtable
Fluno Center, Madison, WI
August 4, 2015
Register Now
Logistics and other Information
Agenda
9:00AM – Registration and Continental Breakfast
9:30AM – Roundtable begins
2:00PM – Roundtable adjournsContact Information:
Anne Reynolds, Executive Director
UW Center for Cooperatives
anne.reynolds@wisc.edu
(608) 263-4775
Registration and Cost: $100 per participant includes light breakfast, lunch and onsite parking at the Fluno CenterRegister two or more individuals from the same cooperative and receive a 10% discount!There is a limited number of financial hardship registrations available. If you need assistance, please contact us.
Thank you to Cooperative Network for cosponsoring this event!
This program is presented by:
The University of Wisconsin Center for Cooperatives and UW Extension
Copyright © 2015 University of Wisconsin Center for Cooperatives, All rights reserved.unsubscribe from this list    update subscription preferences

Grant writing workshops in March

The UW-Extension Community Food Systems Team (Carrie Edgar, Erin Peot, & Andrew Bernhardt) is partnering with USDA’s Agricultural Marketing Service (AMS) and will be leading three Grant Writing Workshops for the Farmers Market Promotion Program (FMPP) and the Local Foods Promotion Program (LFPP) at three locations around the state –

  • March 3:   Eau Claire County UW-Extension, 227 1st Street West, Altoona, WI 54720
  • March 4:   Brown County UW-Extension, 1150 Bellevue Street, Green Bay, WI 54302
  • March 6:   Dane County UW-Extension, 5201 Fen Oak Dr. Madison, WI 53718

Each workshop will run from 10am – 3pm and all workshops are free (including free lunch) but you must register.

Register at: http://www.eventbrite.com/e/farmers-market-and-local-food-promotion-program-grant-writing-workshop-registration-15540017611?ref=ebtnebregn

Please register at least a week prior to the event so that we can get accurate counts for lunch.

This is a great opportunity to refine your own project idea and learn about these great grant programs!

Learn more about this event at: http://dane.uwex.edu/2015/01/29/amstaworkshop/

Strengthen your values-based supply chain connections

Remember the talk about a trade association for regional food? the Local Food Association, based in Lexington, KY,  is organizing just such a service! The director bio is awesome and they have a great board of directors. They are hosting a first conference November 6th for supply chain businesses, including farmers / shippers, to meet and do business.

http://www.infoinc.com/LFA/0814.html