Biological pesticides are included in integrated pest management systems

In Southeast Farm Press

Biological pesticides can play a key role in a successful integrated pest management program and can be useful in increasing sustainability on the farm.

Speaking at a symposium on the role biological crop protection products can play in sustainable agriculture in Orlando Oct. 11, David Epstein, senior entomologist with USDA’s Office of Pest Management Policy, said integrated pest management, or IPM, is all about ecosystems and a systems-based approach to controlling pests. Continue reading

New Organic Management Resource Available from SARE

Increasingly aware how food purchases affect their health and the environment, consumers are changing the way they eat. Sales of organic products in the United States totaled $47 billion in 2016, an increase of nearly $3.7 billion from 2015. But demand for many organic staples continues to outstrip domestic supplies, despite record growth in the number of new organic operations. Continue reading

AgriLife Research project to examine, educate on organic wheat systems

by Kay Ledbetter, Texas A&M AgriLife

Organic wheat and beef may not be for everyone, but one Texas A&M AgriLife team is going to make sure producers in Texas know more about the possibilities than they currently do.

Dr. Curtis Adams, Texas A&M AgriLife Research crop physiologist at Vernon, will lead a new project funded by the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s National Institute of Food and Agriculture in the Organic Transition Program. Continue reading

NIFA Invests in Research on Organic Agriculture and Animal Health

USDA National Institute of Food and Agriculture Invests in Research to Help Boost Organic Farming, Ranching

WASHINGTON, D.C.  Oct. 11, 2017 – The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA) today announced grants to help farmers and ranchers grow and market high quality organic food, fiber, and other products. The grants are funded through the Organic Agriculture Research and Extension Initiative (OREI) and Organic Transitions Program (ORG). Read the full announcement at the NIFA website.

NIFA Invests in Research to Maintain Healthy Agricultural Animals

WASHINGTON, D.C. Oct. 11, 2017 – The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA) today announced support for research to help maintain healthy agricultural animals. The funding is made possible through NIFA’s Agriculture and Food Research Initiative (AFRI) program, authorized by the 2014 Farm Bill. Read the full announcement at the NIFA website.

ATTRA Publication Offers Advice on Cover Crops

The type of cover crop best suited for you can vary depending on your climate, soil, and other needs. ATTRA’s recent publication, “Cover Crop Options for Hot and Humid Areas,” provides insight into the characteristics of cover crops that are better suited for areas with hot, humid summers, like the southern portions of Texas and Florida and along the Gulf Coast, the Caribbean, Hawaii, and points beyond with similar climatic conditions.

The publication addresses the challenge of organic crop production in hot, humid places through proper cover-crop selection and management. Which covers are most appropriate? Which can take the heat? You can find the answers free online at https://attra.ncat.org/attra-pub/summaries/summary.php?pub=570. Continue reading

Organic Farming Research Foundation Request for Proposals (RFP) for 2018 Grant Funding

The Organic Farming Research Foundation (OFRF) grants program is open to all applicants residing in Canada, Mexico and the United States. OFRF does not fund projects outside of these countries.

OFRF invites proposals from all applicants. OFRF particularly encourages farmers, ranchers, graduate students and early career researchers, veterans and Extension personnel to consider applying for funding. Farmers and ranchers often find that working with a professional researcher helps to design and carry out a research project, and OFRF encourages applications from such partnerships.

The deadline for proposals is Dec. 15, 2017. OFRF will notify applicants about funding decisions in spring 2018. Continue reading

Contaminated organic insecticides recall notice

Below is a link to a fact sheet from Arizona State that provides info on four neem-based organic insecticide formulations that were contaminated with synthetic ingredients. Certified organic growers particularly should be aware that using these might result in loss of organic integrity. A recall has been issued so hopefully the contaminated products can be removed and replaced soon with unadulterated formulations.

Adulterated azadirachtin products