Organic Intensives during Agriculture and Natural Resources Week at MSU March 9, 2017

The following program may be of interest, taking place during ANR week on the MSU campus:

Organic Intensives
March 9, Brody Hall , MSU Campus

Registration begins at 8:30 am. Classes begin at 9:00 and last until 5:00, with a one- hour break for lunch at the Brody Cafe, as well as smaller breaks during the morning and afternoon sessions.


Description from MOFFA: “MOFFA ORGANIC INTENSIVES is a day-long, concentrated learning experience for farmers and serious gardeners. As participants in the plethora of Michigan conferences, as well as hosting our own conference for many years, we believed that if we could channel our resources into a day of intensive coverage of a limited number of specific topics we could fill a need that currently was not being met. In addition this would allow us,as a volunteer-run non-profit organization,to maximize our resources in a realistic manner.”

For 2017, MOFFA is working with individuals who are recognized experts and educators in one of three topic areas:

  • Pest Management for Diversified Farms
  • Organic Field Crop Marketing
  • Successful Organic Gardening

See this flyer for schedule and more details.

The cost for the full day of Organic Intensives is $75 for MOFFA members and $85 for non-members—but only until February 15. After that date, the registration fee will increase to $85 for members and $95 for non-members.

More information can be found at this link.


Webinar Series: Local Foods College

Join University of Minnesota Extension and the Statewide Health Improvement Program in 2017 for the 6th annual Local Foods College webinar series! These FREE online classes are available to anyone interested in strengthening food systems, and run from January 17 through March 7, 2017. Sessions are held Tuesdays at 6:00 p.m. (Central) and can be viewed from any computer with internet access.

Local Foods College is FREE but registration is required.  To register, click here.

2017 Local Foods College Schedule of Topics:

January 17- Soil Health
January 24- Disease Management in a High Tunnel
January 31- Harvest Handbook
February 7- Sheep on a Small Farm – A Natural Fit
February 14- Raising Poultry for Fun or Profit
February 21- Cottage Food Law
February 28- Accessing capital for Growing your Commercial Scale Production
March 7- Seed Saving

Cover Crops 2017- Looking Beyond the Basics

The American Society of Agronomy is offering a webinar series on advanced cover crop management sponsored by North Central SARE in January and February.

Cover Crops and Pest Management- The Good and Bad
Thursday, January 26, 2017 at 12:00 pm Eastern

You Know the Basics, Now What? Cover Crops 2.0
Thursday, February 2, 2017 at 12:00 pm Eastern

Scouting Cover Crops- What to Look For
Thursday, February 9, 2017 at 12:00 pm Eastern

Upcoming Farm Conferences

The season for farming conferences is upon us!

Think about trading in your tools and work gloves for a pen and notepad for a few days. Farm conferences offer a bounty of workshops and information for people of varying backgrounds, interests, and degrees of experience, and are a great place to connect with other farmers.

Here are a few that are coming up that are taking place in and around Michigan:


Northern Michigan Small Farms Conference
Jan 27-28, 2017
Traverse City, MI

Northern Michigan Small Farm Conference

Michigan Family Farms Conference
Feb 4, 2017
Marshall, MI


Ohio Ecological Food and Farming Association (OEFFA) Conference
Feb 9-11, 2017
Dayton, OH

Midwest Organic and Sustainable Education Service (MOSES) Conference
Feb 23-25, 2017
La Crosse, WI

Organic Reporting Session during ANR Week-March 10 in East Lansing, MI

The Organic Reporting Session-Cover Crops-Options and Opportunities will occur on Friday, March 10 from 8:30-4, a part of MSU’s Ag and Natural Resource Week.  Our keynote, Dr. Alan Sudermeier from Ohio State University will  present about the long-term field crop research project that compares organic and convention systems using different levels of inputs and various management practices . Also, Colleen Fosteri, with the Soil Conservation District in Van Buren County, MI  will share results from  on-farm work  with mixes of covers and various ways of incorporating to maximize window of planting time (fly on for example and with last cultivation of crop).  To catch us up to date on current research in Michigan, presentations will be offered by Michigan State University professors, describing results of their cover crop research. We are aiming to present on several operation types, including fruit, vegetable, field crop and grazing systems. To top off our day we ask all to join in an analysis of what Michigan needs from cover crop research, focusing on soil needs and management approaches.  This is a great opportunity for new and experienced organic farmers to come together with researchers and educators to learn and share about cover crops in their system. Cost is $25 for farmers and $30 for others, which  includes registration, lunch and breaks.