Alaska Farm Bureau News                                                          September 2019

A Note from Your Executive Director


Greetings.......
 
It's feeling a bit fall-ish outside! That means it's time to start thinking about Alaska Farm Bureau's Annual Meeting events......pack your bathing suit - we're going to Chena Hot Springs!
 
The Friday Forum is November 15th and Annual Meeting November 16th. Get your room reserved by calling 907-451-8104 ext 1904 and use the group code FBA111419 or fill out the online  reservation form and specify in the comments that you're attending the AK Farm Bureau Annual Meeting.
 
If you want to participate in voting for directors or at the Annual Meeting, make sure your 2019 dues are paid!
 
Cheers......


Amy Seitz
Executive Director

Alaska Farm Bureau

37075 Nicholas View Lane
Soldotna, AK 99669 



FARM BUREAU BOARD OF DIRECTORS ELECTION

It's that time of year! Time to nominate someone to represent your chapter on the Alaska Farm Bureau's Board of Directors. Nomination Petition should have arrived in the mail. Complete the petition with the name and address of the person you wish to nominate to represent your chapter on the Board of Directors.  
 
Two General Members who have their 2019 dues paid must sign the nomination petition.  The petition must also be signed by the person nominated indicating that they agree to serve if elected.  The person nominated must be a General Member and have their 2019 dues paid.  A General Member is actively engaged in agriculture or mariculture.
 
Nominating petitions must be received or postmarked by September 15th.  They should be mailed to the Alaska Farm Bureau Office at 37075 Nicholas View Lane, Soldotna, AK 99669.  Ballots will be mailed to eligible voters by October 1st. 
 
Members of the Kodiak Chapter will not be participating in the election process this year as their Director, Lorne White's term of office does not expire until 2020.

WANTED!!!

YOUR NOMINATIONS FOR LEGISLATOR OF THE YEAR AND AGRICULTURE APPRECIATION AWARDS
 
The Ag Appreciation Award will honor your neighbor who is exceptional in their service to agriculture and the farmers and ranchers in Alaska.  
 
The Legislator of the Year Award is to honor a Representative or Senator who has made a significant contribution to the advancement, promotion, or protection of agricultural producers in the state.
 
The deadline to nominate is September 15th. The nomination process is not a formal one as there are no applications or forms to complete.  Just send an e-mail or a note with the person's name and a brief description of why you think they should be honored.  Send your nominations to the Alaska Farm Bureau's office at 37075 Nicholas View Lane, Soldotna, AK 99669 or e-mail it to amy.seitz@gmail.com .

ALASKA FARM BUREAU
PHOTOGRAPHY CONTEST

Deadline October 1st!

"And time marches on..." by Emmy Van Wye
People's Choice Winner 2018
I hope you have your camera with you this summer! Now is the time to take pictures for our photo contest! 

The contest is open to every member and their children.  
 
There are three categories:  
  1. Farm Animals, 
  2. Farm Scenery, and 
  3. Country Children. 
A $100 first prize will be awarded in each category.  Those attending the Friday Forum and Annual Meeting will select the "People's Choice" from among all the photographs entered.  That winner will also be awarded $100.00.
 
Photographs will be judged on the following criteria:  creativity, originality and human interest.  
 
The photographs should be digital and e-mailed to AKFB executive director at amy.seitz@gmail.com.  
 
Photos can also be mailed to 37075 Nicholas View Lane, Soldotna, AK 99669.  The deadline is October 1st.  
 
Copies of the photographs may be used by the Alaska Farm Bureau to promote agriculture in our membership brochures, website and Facebook.  Credit will be given to the photographer if your photo is used.





The  NAHMS Goat 2019 Study  is well underway in Alaska!
 
If you have at least 5 adult goats, and are interested in participating in this important study, please read for more details.
 
From July through December 2019, the USDA National Animal Health Monitoring System (NAHMS) is conducting its second national study of the U.S. goat industry. 
 
The NAHMS Goat 2019 study will take an in-depth look at the priority issues facing U.S. goat operations and provide new and valuable information regarding animal health and management practices in this growing industry.  This is the first time that Alaska has been included in a NAHMS study for any livestock species, so this is a very exciting opportunity for us!
 
The study includes several testing opportunities, such as pre- and post- deworming fecal egg counts, that are free to the producer. 
 
Please see the attached brochure for more information.  Note that Alaska's sampling schedule will be slightly ahead of what is described in the attachment, and Phase II will conclude at the end of September.  Also, in Alaska the questionnaires and sample collection will be done by the Office of the State Veterinarian, rather than by NASS and APHIS.
 
If you have at least 5 adult goats, and are interested in participating in this important study, please contact Dr. Bob Gerlach or Dr. Sarah Coburn; 907-375-8200 or sarah.coburn@alaska.gov .
 
We will be in the Kenai/Soldotna area September 13-15 and will be available to collect samples during this time. Please contact us as soon as possible to set up an appointment.
 
Thank you,
Office of the State Veterinarian


Hemp Crop Insurance Coverage Available for 2020

Certain industrial hemp growers will be able to obtain insurance coverage under the Whole-Farm Revenue Protection (WFRP) program for crop year 2020. USDA's Risk Management Agency (RMA) today announced coverage for hemp grown for fiber, flower or seeds, which will be available to producers who are in areas covered by USDA-approved hemp plans or who are part of approved state or university research pilot programs.
 
"Numerous producers are anxious for a way to protect their hemp crops from natural disasters," said RMA Administrator Martin Barbre. "The WFRP policy will provide a safety net for them. We expect to be able to offer additional hemp coverage options as USDA continues implementing the 2018 Farm Bill." 
 
Producers can obtain WFRP coverage for hemp now if they are part of a Section 7606 state or university research pilot as authorized by the 2014 Farm Bill. Other producers cannot obtain coverage until a USDA-approved plan is in place. 
 
WFRP allows coverage of all revenue for commodities produced on a farm up to a total insured revenue of $8.5 million. It is popular for specialty crops, organic commodities and non-traditional crops. 
 
The 2018 Farm Bill amended the Controlled Substances Act to address how industrial hemp is to be defined and regulated at the federal level, and those modifications cleared the way for the Federal Crop Insurance Corporation to offer policies for it. The Farm Bill defines hemp as containing 0.3 percent or less tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) on a dry weight basis.
 
Policy Requirements
 
RMA has started addressing the changes by offering hemp coverage under WFRP for the 2020 crop year. To be eligible, among other requirements, a hemp producer must comply with applicable state, tribal or federal regulations for hemp production and have a contract for the purchase of the insured industrial hemp.
 
WFRP provisions state that hemp having THC above the compliance level will not constitute an insurable cause of loss. Additionally, hemp will not qualify for replant payments under WFRP.
 
Hemp Plans
 
USDA's Agricultural Marketing Service (AMS) is formulating regulations that will include specific details for both a USDA plan for the production of hemp and a process for submission of state, territorial or tribal plans to USDA. AMS is developing the regulation now, which is anticipated to post to the Federal Register later this year.
 
Once rulemaking is complete, RMA, the Farm Service Agency (FSA), the Natural Resources Conservation Service and other USDA agencies will share eligibility information on their programs, which include safety net, conservation, farm loan and disaster assistance programs. This includes FSA looking at additional coverage options through its Noninsured Crop Disaster Assistance Program and through RMA-administered crop insurance.
 
More Information
For more information on the Hemp Production Program, visit the AMS Hemp Production webpage  and these questions and answers .
 
For more information on WFRP coverage, visit the   Hemp and Farm Bill Programs webpage on farmers.gov. RMA will publish a bulletin with additional information for approved insurance providers on Aug. 30.
 
#
 
USDA is an equal opportunity provider, employer and lender.


Items Needed for Bruce Willard Scholarship Auction!
   
Each year we have an auction during the Friday Forum and Banquet to benefit students seeking an education in agriculture or natural resources.  Depending on scholarship funds, the Alaska Farm Bureau awards one or two, $2000.00 scholarships to assist students going into an agriculture or natural resource field. 
 
Silent auction takes place during the Friday Forum, November 15th, followed up with an outcry auction at our banquet Friday night.  

This auction is the main source of funds for the Bruce Willard Scholarship program - 100% of funds raised go to helping students who want to work in agriculture or natural resources.  

Youth involvement in agriculture is important to the Alaska Farm Bureau, this scholarship is one way we can help younger generations continue to be part of ag.  If continued education for our youth is important to you, please bring donations for the auction!   
 
Donations can be mailed to the Alaska Farm Bureau at 37075 Nicholas View Lane, Soldotna, AK 99669, dropped off at the Friday Forum registration table the morning of Friday, November 15th.  If donations are too large to bring in we will make a certificate for those items.  

COMING SOON - ONLINE BUYERS GUIDE
 
The Alaska Farm Bureau is working with Strategic Value Media ("SVM") to build an on-line buyer's guide.
 
The buyer's guide will be a great resource available on-line at no cost to all of our members as well as others who visit our website and will contain information on where to obtain a variety of products and services related to farming.
 
As an example of what to expect, check out Oregon Farm Bureau's buyers guide  here  .

CLASSIFIEDS

 
2019 Hay for Sale: Brome with a little mixed grass/Timothy for sale. 65 pound square bales 2019 cutting. Stored in the barn- never rained on. $12.00 per bale. Call 907-723-1132 Jim or 907-518-4232 Gayle. Located south of Delta Junction. B'n'B Ranch.
 
100% Alaska Grown Wine: Alaska Berries, located near Soldotna, is the first and only Estate winery in Alaska. An estate winery is one that grows ALL of its fruit used in its wine.

Our business hours are Wed thru Sun from 12:00-6:00pm. We are closed on Mondays and Tuesdays.

Come visit our tasting room and sample our wines before you buy. Sorry, but we are not shipping wine at this time.
 
Call Brian @ 907-252-8511
   
Brome/Timothy Hay: Brome & Timothy hay in square and round bales. We also have straw in square and round bales. Call for prices for pickup or delivery. Scott @ 308-362-9060
 
We Buy Berries: Bear Creek Winery is family-owned and operated and has a limited farm-to-table element. Our award winning wines are so popular that we cannot grow enough berries to keep up with demand, so we also buy berries from local farmers. Please keep us in mind if you are thinking of growing or need a buyer for any of the following crops:

Red and Golden Raspberries, Black Currants, Gooseberries, Strawberries, Apples, and Blueberries.

Call us at 907-235-8484
 
Would you like to post a free classified ad and reach producers in Alaska? It's free for members. Email Amy your classified ad for possible inclusion on the website and email newsletter. 


Events

September 14 --10:00am-6:00pm -  Harvest Moon Local Food Festival

Kenai Local Food Connection is pleased to announce its 7
th  Annual Harvest Moon Local Food Festival to be held 10 am - 6 pm, Saturday, Sept. 14 at Soldotna Creek Park in Soldotna.  

It's the Kenai Peninsula's biggest farmers market and local food celebration of the year with live music, free kids' activities, food demonstrations, the popular Fermentation Station, and all sorts of Alaska Grown and Made in Alaska food and wellness products.   

New this year: strolling performers and a pie baking contest hosted by the Kenai Peninsula Chapter of the Alaska Farm Bureau and 4-H Club.  Pre-festival events include a Wild Edibles Walk, 1 - 3 pm on Sept. 8, and a Berry Identification Walk, 4 - 6 pm on Sept. 12. 

Prospective vendors are encouraged to apply at https://www.KenaiLocalFood.org/projects For the full schedule of events, see www.KenaiLocalFood.org .
 
September 15: Nominations for Ag Appreciation Award & Legislator of the Year due to Alaska Farm Bureau Executive Director: amy.seitz@gmail.com
 
September 15 : Nomination Forms for Alaska Farm Bureau Board of Directors must be in the mail.
 
October 1 : Photo Contest submissions due
 
November 15 - 8:00am Alaska Farm Bureau's Friday Forum
 
November 16 - 8:00am Alaska Farm Bureau's Annual Meeting


Do you have an event coming up that's of interest to Alaska agriculture producers? Email it to Amy for possible inclusion on the website and in our email newsletter. 


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