the irresistible fleet of bicycles


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last chance to register for cornell rotational grazing skills course this weekend!

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credit: Jason Detzel

This weekend, Friday August 25th – Saturday August 26th CCEE Livestock Educator Jason Detzel is running a 2 day hands on clinic on rotational grazing. Over the course of the weekend you will learn the practical skills necessary for implementing a rotational grazing system on your farm to improve the overall health and efficiency of your animals. Rotational grazing systems can also increase your profits by lowering feed costs, improving pasture swards, decreasing on farm labour requirements among a host of other benefits.
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agroforestry in practice training

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Cornell Small Farms Programme are running a three day Agroforestry in Practice training course that will take place from October 17th – 19th, 2017 at the Schuyler County Cooperative Extension at Montour Falls NY.

Agroforestry is the science and art of combining trees and forests with crop production. It is a topic of great interest to many landowners and farmers and offers many promising enterprises including maple syrup, log mushroom cultivation, silvopasture (combining trees and livestock) and others.

Agroforestry has been established as one of the most reliable and promising uses of land in terms of economic return and environmental sustainability and health. The 3 day course is designed specifically with service providers in mind and offers a combination of both classroom time and field experience in established agroforestry farms.

The list of farms on the agenda right now are fantastic and will be sure to give a diverse overview of the possibilities of agroforestry. They include but are not limited to a 300 acre cattle grazing and silvopasture system, a farm that grows shiitake mushrooms and maple syrup combined with sheep and duck silvopasture and two farms that focus on orchard alley cropping and animal integration.

To register for this fantastic course or for more information click HERE

 


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the right to repair movement takes on apple and john deere in nebraska

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Photograph: Olivia Solon for the Guardian

“Kyle is one of many farmers in the US fighting for the right to repair their equipment. He and others are getting behind Nebraska’s “Fair Repair” bill, which would require companies to provide consumers and independent repair shops access to service manuals, diagnostic tools and parts so they aren’t limited to a single supplier. They have an unlikely ally: repair shops for electronic items like iPhones, tablets and laptops who struggle to find official components and information to fix broken devices. This means the bill could benefit not just farmers but anyone who owns electronic goods. There’s also a benefit to the environment, as it would allow for more refurbishment and recycling instead of sending equipment to the landfill,” Continue reading


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upcoming draft animal-power field days

DAPFD poster.jpgThe Draft Animal-Power Network are running 3 days of events at the Cornish Fairgrounds NH from September 29th – October 1st. The Draft Animal-Power Network aims to advance the use of draft animals, to promote sustainable land stewardship and to build vibrant communities through year-round educational and networking opportunities that highlight the ongoing efforts of people throughout the region.

The weekends events will begin on Friday, September 29th, with 3 intensive all day workshops which will give participants the opportunity to spend an entire day learning with hands on experience from experienced teamsters. The topics for the workshops include ‘Cultivation and Tillage with Draft Animals’, ‘Growing Your Draft Animal Power Farm’ and ‘Forest to Frame’. Friday evening will end with a square dance with the Bob Boynton Square Dance Band. On Saturday and Sunday, there will be more half day workshops, round-table discussions, music by the bonfire, obstacle courses and teamster challenges and much more!

There are also 20 weekend scholarship places for young teamsters, to apply, email dapnetinfo@gmail.com explaining why you are interested in attending asap!

To find out more about the weekend’s events and to register click HERE 


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the 12th annual blackfly ball is this weekend!

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credit: Gabby Schutlz and the beehive collective 

The 12th annual all-ages dress-up Blackfly Ball is taking place this weekend, August 19th, in Machias, Maine. The Ball has been taking place every year since 2005 to celebrate the restoration and reopening of the Machias Valley Grange Hall and as a testimony to the 100+ years that the building has served as a community center to the people of Washington County. The event itself embodies the history of the building, bringing together people from all walks of life to find a common ground through community and celebration.

This years line up features soothing brass, wacky ukuleles, flocks of fiddles and more from far and wide. This event is 100% free and is entirely funded by poster sales, the posters are designed each year by the newest illustrator to join the Beehive Collective and are exceptionally beautiful!

To see all of the previous posters click HERE and to find out more information about the ball and to keep up to date or to organise ride sharing to and from the ball click HERE


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fda questions safety of the ‘impossible burger’

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photo credit: Natural News

Recent documents obtained under the Freedom of Information Act show that the Impossible Burger, a meatless burger derived from a protein found in the root of the soy plant is not necessarily safe for human consumption. The burger in question has received a lot of high profile attention recently because despite containing no meat, it looks very much like a regular beef patty, and it ‘bleeds’ like one too. It is a frontrunner in the race to create lab-grown ‘meat’.

The FOI documents show that the FDA cast doubt on the safety of the key GMO ingredient,soy leghemeglobin, with the company being told that they has not provided adequate proof of safety for their genetically engineered protein before putting it on the market.  Impossible Foods based their safety analysis on the similarities between their protein and the proteins found in pork. What they failed to identify and acknowledge was the differences between both proteins and the impact of these differences.  Continue reading


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watch: national young farmers coalition lindsey lusher shute’s fantastic statement before the senate.

We are so proud of Lindsey Luscher Shute after her outstanding performance before the senate committee on Agriculture, Nutrition and Forestry. She did a fantastic job of representing the struggles facing young farmers, from land access and affordability, student loan debt, health care affordability to the bias against women and people of color in the existing agricultural framework. She went on to outline the progress needed going forward and the issues that need to be addressed in the next Farm Bill in order to support a new generation of farmers who face different challenges and require different support mechanisms.

Lindsey also submitted a full written testimony that goes into much more detail about the young farmers movement. To read the full testimony click HERE