the irresistible fleet of bicycles

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washington: local food systems training for young adults


Registration is currently open for the 2014 year of Cascade Mountain School. Five programs for middle and high school students run from June to August. Need-based scholarships are available on a case-by-case basis.

This year’s course offerings are:

  • Sustainable Agriculture Course: June 21-July 3. This for-credit course for students age 15-18 is based in Trout Lake, Wash., at the base of Mt. Adams. Students dig into what agricultural sustainability means at the individual, local and global scales while farming, cooking and bicycling around this beautiful valley. High school science credit, college credit and 20 hours of service credit are available.
  • Mt. Hood Watershed Science Camp: July 20-25This adventurous, science-based camp for students age 14-18 explores the Hood River watershed.  Students start on the flanks of Mt. Hood and backpack, bicycle, and raft down the Hood River while learning how this rich ecosystem functions.
  • Farm to Table Bike Camp for High School Students: July 27-August 1. This fun-filled camp for students age 15-18 is based in in Trout Lake, Wash., at the base of Mt. Adams.  Students farm, cook, and bicycle through a beautiful organic valley while having conversations about food and food choices.
  • Farm to Table Bike Camp for Middle School Students: August 3-8. This fun-filled camp for students age 12-14 is based in in Trout Lake, Wash., at the base of Mt. Adams. Students farm, cook, and bicycle through a beautiful organic valley while having conversations aboutfood and food choices.
  • Field Ecology Course: August 3-16. This for-credit course for students age 15-18 is based on Mt. Adams and in Trout Lake, Wash.  Students get a hands-on field science experience working alongside professional scientists and learn about climate change, glaciers and mountain ecology. High school science credit, college credit and 20 hours of service credit are available.

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young farmers in the news

“Greenhorns”: California couple learns farm life running local CSA farm
By Polly Keary, Editor

Andrew Ide, 27, has a degree in philosophy and theology. His wife Micha, 29, has a degree in anthropology and part of another in interior design. Both have experience in the California corporate world.

None of that knowledge is doing them any good now.

The chickens are out.

Read the rest of the article here.

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tilth producers conference, washington


Seattle, WA – Tilth Producers of Washington is pleased to announce registration is open for its annual conference at the Yakima Convention Center, November 8-10. The conference is open to all and typically attended by 400 organic and sustainable farmers, orchardists, ranchers and industry representatives. The 3-day conference features 30 workshops, Spanish language sessions, farm tours, an organic apple tasting and a keynote address by fourth generation farmers David Mas Masumoto and daughter Nikiko Masumoto of California’s Central Valley. Attendance is $170 for members and $220 for non members. Scholarships applications will be accepted until October 11th.

The theme for this year’s conference is “Nourishing the Future: Cultivating Our Farming Legacy.” Workshop presenters from the state’s organic and sustainable farming sector will address topics such as ecological weed management, fire blight, seed growing, leasing land, renewable energy, farm financing, quinoa production, draft horses and food safety.

The conference is preceded by a Friday symposium, “Small Scale Livestock and Poultry Production,” hosted by Washington State University, and a tour of Yakima Valley farms utilizing high tunnels to extend the growing season and increase productivity. Conference social events include a Friday session dedicated to the intergenerational transfer of farming knowledge, “Learning from Elders”, in addition to an annual organic wine tasting and auction, a dance and an awards banquet where Tilth Producers honors a Farmer and Advocate of the year. The weekend concludes with Tilth Producers annual meeting and board elections.

The conference is funded in part by USDA’s Beginning Farmer and Rancher Development Program and USDA Specialty Crop Block Grant. For more information and to register please visit

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free ag business training from L+I, washington state


Free Agricultural Business Training

WHEN: Friday, November 15, 2013, 7:30am – 4:15pm

WHERE: Department of Labor and Industries, 7273 Linderson Way, SW, Tumwater, WA 98501

COST: FREE! Pre-registration highly recommended because this training will fill up. Email, Mail or Fax a copy of the attached registration form to:; MAIL: Dept. of Labor & Industries, Attn: Oscar Cerda, PO BOX 44400, Olympia, WA 98504-4400; FAX360-902-5292.

CONTACT: For all questions please contact Oscar Cerda at:

Do you have a business plan? Do you need to update your marketing plan? Want to learn more about common business issues faced by beginning or new farmers? Want to learn what you can do to control your company’s workers compensation premiums? Want to learn about farm insurance, or financing?

Then this Free training event is for you. All of the experts that can answer these questions have been brought together to bring you Agriculture Business Training. More than 20 different classes are available on everything from marketing your business to saving money on premiums and safety.

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pacific NW+alaska USDA grain prices

canola2USDA Announces Harvest Prices for 2013 Crop Year Small Grains and Canola Revenue Products

SPOKANE, Wash., September 5, 2013 — USDA’s Risk Management Agency (RMA) announced approved harvest prices for the 2013 crop year for revenue protection insurance plans within the Common Crop Insurance Policy for wheat, barley, fall canola, and rapeseed in Alaska, Idaho, Oregon, and Washington.

Barley (Alaska) Spring TBD approx. 10/1/13
Barley Winter $4.31/bu.
Barley Spring $4.31/bu.
Canola Fall $0.220/lb.
Canola Spring TBD approx. 10/1/13
Rapeseed Fall $0.303/lb. (set equal to Projected Price)
Rapeseed Spring (set equal to Projected Price)
Wheat Winter $7.26/bu.
Wheat             Spring $7.26/bu.
Wheat (Alaska) Spring $7.33/bu.

Harvest prices for spring canola and Alaska barley will be announced in early October. Harvest prices for corn and soybeans will be announced in the next couple of months.

For producers who bought a 2013 crop year Revenue Protection or Revenue Protection with Harvest Price Exclusion policy, the harvest price is used to determine the calculated revenue. The harvest price is multiplied by the appraised and/or harvested production to determine the calculated revenue. The calculated revenue is subtracted from the final revenue guarantee to determine possible indemnities (insurance losses).

Producers should contact their insurance agent to learn more program details related to these price announcements.

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handmade soba

Sharing the art of noodle making: Sonoko Sakai’s Kneading Conference West workshop will lead participants through the step by step hands-on process that turns buckwheat into delicious Zaru Soba (cold buckwheat noodles served with a dipping sauce and garnishes).


Sonoko Sakai is a food writer, Japanese cooking instructor and noodle maker.

Her kitchen stories and recipes have been published in the Los Angeles Times, Chicago Tribune, Saveur and Zester Daily. Sakai’s cookbook, The Poetical Pursuit of Food, Japanese Recipes for American Cooks (Potter) is about the season-to-season days spent in her grandmother’s kitchen in Japan. Sakai is founder of Common Grains, a cultural and educational project dedicated to providing people in the world with a deeper understanding and appreciation for Japanese food and culture.  One of Common Grains’ missions is to showcase the everyday importance of grains within a healthy lifestyle. Sakai is working to develop a community grain hub in Southern California with a grant from Anson Mills.  Sakai lives with her husband in Los Angeles.  Their son, Sakae and his wife Binah live in Seattle.

TO ENROLL email  First come, first served.
The 2013 Kneading Conference West schedule.
Register NOW!
Save your spot at the Kneading Conference West.
September 12-14, 2013
Washington State University Agriculture Research and Extension Center
Mount Vernon, Washington
Registration fee: $300.
Tuition includes all days, multiple workshops and lectures, and delicious meals from local farms and producers.
For more information:

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