February 2018 - Issue No. 147
Ag Facts
  • More than 7,000 farmers and markets now participate in SNAP - nine times the number that participated in 2008
  • The average age of a U.S. farmer has been rising, from 52 in 1992 to 58 in 2012
  • 8,600+ farmers markets are now in operation around the country
  • Livestock (beef and other animals) farms run by women accounted for $6.9 billion in yearly sales, about 26 percent of the total $182.2 billion
  • Colorado has the 9th largest cattle inventory in the United States, at 2.9 million cattle. 
Source: USA Today Special Edition U.S. Department of Agriculture 2017
Lettuce Save the Colorado River

Colorado boasts over a hundred cattle feedlots capable of holding over a thousand animals, according to the state's Department of Public Health and Environment. Many of those operations are close to waterways. Like in other states, it's up to cattlemen and regulators to keep manure out of streams and groundwater. Environmentalists worry that will get trickier as historic rain events become more common.Water levels are up this winter at Lake Mead, a gauge for the Colorado River's ability to supply 30 million people with water, thanks partly to a surprising hero: lettuce.

Farmers' switching to lettuce, which uses less water because it's cultivated only part of the year, from alfalfa, a thirsty year-round crop, helped push the lake to 1,087.6 feet (331.5 meters) above sea level as of Jan. 31. That's more than 1 foot higher than a year ago and above the benchmark of 1,075 feet, at which point regional water restrictions kick in.

The improvement, which brought a sigh of relief to a dry region, is mostly due to a record snowpack in the Sierra Nevada mountains that ended California's drought by early 2017. But some credit goes to farmers, the biggest users of the region's water, who in some places have been doing exactly what climate experts say they should be doing-switching crops for conservation reasons.

Full article here
We would love volunteers on Friday afternoons between noon and 3pm to help with the CAA Market.  Please contact: Michele Meyer,  michele@communityagalliance.org970-879-4370
Ag Appreciation Week:  March 18-24, 2018
Ag Appreciation Week (National Ag Week) is a time to recognize and celebrate the importance of agriculture.  Agriculture provides most everything we eat, use and wear on a daily basis. 
National and local efforts educate millions of consumers and ask "Where would YOU be without agriculture?  Naked and Hungry!"

Since 2013 Ag Week has become CAA's largest fund raising effort. Area businesses, individuals and organizations sponsor our efforts with annual membership contributions and sponsorships.  Please consider joining us and support local ag!


Please join us for the following events:

  • Friday, March 16 - Taste of Routt County
    • 12 pm, Tread of Pioneers Museum
  • Monday, March 19 - Heritage Agriculture Storytelling
    • 6 pm, Bud Werner Memorial Library
  • Tuesday, March 20 - State of the River Address
    • 5:30 pm, Community Center
  • Wednesday, March 21 - Celebrate Agriculture Breakfast
    • 7:30 am, Community Center
  • Thursday, March 22 - Micro-Hydro Workshop
    • 12 pm, Craig (Location TBD)
More events and information to follow. If you are interested in becoming a sponsor for Ag Week 2018, please click here.
Be Sure to Fill Out the 2017 Census of Agriculture

Earlier this year, the National Sustainable Agriculture Coalition (NSAC) sent out a call to participate in the 2017 Census of Agriculture. To those farmers and ranchers who signed up to receive the census - thank you for making sure your business is counted and that the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) has current and accurate data! Missed the signup? Don't worry, you can still be counted in the next Census, just click here to signup and you'll be on the list for the 2022 Census.

What is the Census of Agriculture?
The Census is a complete count of all the farms and ranches in the U.S., which aggregates data on land use and ownership, operator characteristics, production practices, income and expenditures and many other demographics. The Census is administered by USDA's National Agricultural Statistics Service (NASS) and is conducted every five years.

The information collected by NASS is vital not only for USDA, but also for food and farm advocates, legislators, and for farmers because the data collecting during the Census directly impacts decisions on critical farm programs and policies. This information is also crucial for farmers and the agricultural economy because it provides a clear picture of market and production trends over time. Participation is especially important by organic, direct-market, urban, beginning, and socially disadvantaged farmers, all of whom have been historically undercounted in the Census.

Respondents have the choice to respond via mail or email, though USDA suggests that participants use email when possible, as the online questionnaire includes several time-saving features such as automatic calculators. Responses are due by February 5, 2018.

Once all responses have been collected, it will take the USDA roughly one year to process and organize the results. Complete 2017 Census data is expected to be released in February 2019.

For more information, click here.
Save the date! 
AgrAbility Workshop February 6th, 10am-2pm, Moffat County Extension Office

This year, we will cover:
  • What is AgrAbility?
  • How to Work Well with Ag Lenders and Bankers, &
  • Saving Time and Money with Assistive Technology
This free educational event is for individuals and the families of people who are dealing with barriers created by illnesses, age, conditions, or limitations. A free lunch is included.  Contact Todd Hagenbuch for more information at 970-879-0825 or thagenbuch@co.routt.co.us

Food: Too Good to Waste
Will you take the Challenge?
February 26 - April 8
An average family of four loses $1,500 on food waste every year. Not only does reducing food waste save money, but it also saves time and natural resources. By taking this Challenge, you will get tips to reduce your food waste, shop smarter and save money. 

Click here for more information on the Challenge or email cameron@yvsc.org to sign-up today. 
2018 Cayuse Classic Horse Series
The only horse show in Routt County beside the County Fair! Join us for a family friendly event and fund raiser for CAA programs.

June 30, 2018
September 8, 2018
Prizes awarded at each show, plus prizes awarded for overall series winners

For additional information or to be a sponsor of this event, please call Marsha Daughenbaugh at 970.879.4370 or email marshad@communityagalliance.org

More details to come...
Did you know?
The CAA Market sells:

Join the Yampavore Movement

Be a Yampavore and shop our online market! All of our products sold are from the Yampa Valley or are regionally connected with local producers. You can find everything from eggs to meat to bread to vegetables. Support local farmers and ranchers by shopping at the CAA Market!

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