Volume 8 | September 2019
Media Survey -
The University of Maine Cooperative Extension Piscataquis County Office wants to make it easy and convenient for people to get the information they want quickly and through the preferred method by surveying users and potential users. You can help by completing the survey online  at http://bit.ly/UMaineSurvey
Your monthly news & updates
What's New?
  • UMaine Presents - brewery tour and food fermentation talk at Bissell Brothers, Milo
  • Why People Buy and Don't Buy at Farmers' Markets - August 2019 Study Results
  • Call 811 Before You Dig Infographic
  • Position Open: Community Education Assistant 4-H in Piscataquis and Penobscot Counties
  • Deadline approaching for pasture, rangeland and forage Crop Insurance program
  • Maine Farms for the Future Now Accepting Grant Applications
  • Items of Interest
  • Featured Resources
  • Upcoming Events
  • Newsletter Subscription Information
  • Mission and Quick Links
  • Local Weather Anytime - Need Pesticide Credits?

Tour Bissell Brothers Three Rivers Brewery and hear about food fermentation on October 22nd, from 5:30 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. at the Three Rivers Brewery and Taproom, 157 Elm Street in Milo.
Sponsored by the Piscataquis County Extension Association, University of Maine School of Food and Agriculture, and the University of Maine Cooperative Extension. A cash bar will be available to give you an opportunity to try Three Rivers Brewery’s latest beers. Registration is required, the cost is $15 and includes light refreshments by Elaine’s Basket Cafe and Bakery in Milo.

Register online  here  or by calling the Piscataquis County Extension Office at 207.564.3301 or in Maine 1.800.287.1491 or by email at  extension.piscataquis@maine.edu .

Dr. Brian Perkins, Research Assistant Professor of School of Food & Agriculture at the University of Maine will talk about his work with general food fermentation (including brewing.) He and his grad students are doing some cool stuff with kombucha, sauerkraut, kvass and beer.

Bissell Brothers Tree River Brewery and Taproom is located in a former snowmobile dealership in Milo, Maine, near the confluence of the Sebec and Piscataquis Rivers – two of the bodies that make up the town’s moniker and namesake of the facility. This brewery was built to focus on mixed-fermentation beers, wood aging, and spontaneous fermentation. The tap room’s large outdoor area features a refurbished 1922 caboose and is host to music, games, and other entertainment.

Every year the Piscataquis County Extension Association celebrates the programs and resources that they bring from the University of Maine to the residents of Piscataquis county. This year they are offering a fun, program to help people become more aware of the value-added products that are being produced in Piscataquis County.

For more information or to request a disability accommodation, call 207.564.3301 or in Maine 1.800.287.1491

Everyone highly values food quality, clean markets, reasonable travel times, and adequate parking at or access to Farmers' Markets (FMs). When compared to general food outlets, the availability of local foods is relatively more important at FMs, even for consumers who don't shop (B3) at FMs.
  • Having a wide selection of different kinds of food (fruits, vegetables, meats, and dairy) is important for both kinds of outlets, but consumers, on average, accept that it is less likely to exist at FMs. That said, improvements in this characteristic, like others involving convenience of food shopping, will likely improve FM attendance by those whose attendance has diminished or is recently nonexistent.
  • Consumers who have purchased at FMs, need food products to be more efficiently organized and prices clearly displayed to improve participation. While B3 consumers may not be able to get all they want at the market, knowing that they can productively get in and out quickly will go a long way in supporting their return.
  • While the availability of nonlocal and out-of-season foods at FMs is often a complex and emotional topic. Thinking creatively about involving local grocery stores to offer such products at FMs or locating FMs close to grocery stores may well be amenable to consumers and farm vendors since the products are not directly competing with their own products for sale.
  • While many FMs have special events, entertainment, craft and RTE food product vendors, none of these characteristics are likely to increase sales of farm vendors to any significant degree.
  • In addition, timing conflicts with consumer schedules are unavoidable, but perhaps can be investigated further to better allow all types of consumers access to the markets.
In particular, the growth in competition for local food product sales cannot be overlooked. Indeed, purchasing of local foods was seen as important even for B3 consumers, and all consumers found availability at other marketing channels a sizable barrier to increasing FM attendance.

Community Education Assistant
The University of Maine Cooperative Extension Penobscot and Piscataquis County Offices invite applications for a full-time Community Education Assistant CL2 in 4-H. The employee will work 40 hours per week to support 4-H clubs, groups, and activities in Penobscot and Piscataquis Counties. Duties include recruiting new youth and volunteers, helping to train 4-H volunteers and support them in carrying out the educational mission of the 4-H program, coordinating volunteer efforts, delivering educational programs using established curriculum, and organizing county 4-H events. The University of Maine Cooperative Extension County offices are located in Bangor and Dover-Foxcroft. The applicant will work from both offices. This position pays $14.30/hr.

Deadline Approaching for Pasture, Rangeland and Forage (PRF) program.  
This crop insurance policy protects grazing or haying acres from a single peril- lack of precipitation using data from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA). Producers must enroll with a crop insurance agent before the November 15 th  deadline for 2020 coverage. 

To learn more about PRF and to hear from a Massachusetts farmer who has used the policy, please view the following  webinar  recorded last year.  

This information is also posted on Extension's  Crop Insurance Education Program  website.
Maine Farms for the Future Program Now Accepting Fall Applications
  The State of Maine, Department of Agriculture, Conservation and Forestry, Bureau of Agriculture, Food and Rural Resources offers grants for business plan development (Phase 1) and investment support (Phase 2) to improve “farm vitality” – defined as an increase in long-term, maintainable, farm profitability and net worth – as authorized in the Maine Farms for the Future Program (Title7, MRS Chapter 10-B). 
Phase 1 grantees are eligible for $6,000 to research and develop a business plan. Farms who have completed Phase 1 are eligible for Phase 2; cash grants and/or the low interest rates through the Agricultural Marketing Loan Fund for farm improvement projects.
Applications are due at 11:59pm local time, Tuesday, October 8th, 2019, 
The current Request for Proposals (RFP#201904076) and Phase 1 and Phase 2 applications for Fall 2019 as well as a Question & Answer Summary and all revisions/amendments related to the RFP can be obtained at this website : Scroll down to DACF – Maine Farms for the Future Program

Items of Interest
Featured Resources

Online Course:
Growing Lavender: A Curriculum for Growers . Michigan State University. The curriculum is composed of seven modules: Why and How to Grow Lavender, Establishing Lavender, Selecting Lavender Varieties, Managing your Lavender Crop, Harvesting and Caring for your Harvested Lavender, Developing your Lavender Farm’s Business Plan and Marketing your Lavender and Farm.

Visit UMaine Extension online Publications Catalog for agricultural publications such as:

Upcoming Events
  • October 24, 28 & 30, 2019 Helping Customers “Find” You... Digital Resources and Tools for Farmers and Direct Marketerswith Adult Ed 10/24/19 NOKOMIS/ Newport, 6 pm to 8 pm, 10/28/19 Piscataquis Extension Office/ Dover-Foxcroft, 6 pm to 8 pm.
  • October 3-4, 2019 Maine Farm to School Conference, KVCC Alfond Campus, 677 Skowhegan Road, Clinton.
  • October 7, 2019 Unuseable Pesticide Collection Day in Presque Isle, to learn more and to register your pesticides go to the Maine Department of Agriculture, Conservation and Forestry site.
  • October 15, 2019 Beef Quality Assurance and Low Stress Cattle Handling, 5:30 pm to 7:30 pm at Findview Farm, 147 Mighty Street, Gorham, Maine, with Colt Knight, UMaine Extension Livestock Specialist. Program fee $10, Contact Becky Gray at rebecca.gray@maine.edu or phone 781-6099.
  • October 22, 2019 UMaine Extension Presents: Tour Bissell Brothers Three Rivers Brewery and hear about food fermentation. Dr. Brian Perkins, Research Assistant Professor of the School of Food & Agriculture at the University of Maine will talk about his work with general food fermentation (including brewing.) 5:30 pm to 8 pm, Bissell Brothers, Milo. $15 Light meal included. Register online or by calling the Piscataquis County Extension Office at 207-564-3301 or email anette.moulton@maine.edu.
  • October 26, 2019 Educate 2 Cultivate: Veterans Business & Assistive Technology Symposium, 9 am to 3 pm, Augusta Armory, 129 Western Ave, Augusta. $20 includes lunch. Hosted by University of Maine Cooperative Extension’s Maine AgrAbility program and the United Farmer Veterans of Maine.
  • October 29, 2019 Recipe to Market: Is it for ME? 9 am to noon, Hancock County Extension Office, Ellsworth. Free.
  • November 2, 2019 MBPA Preconditioned Feeder Calf Sale, Noon, Dick Brown Sales and Service, Richmond.
  • November 4, 2019 11th Annual NH Direct Marketing Conference -Noon to 5:30 pm Portsmouth Country Club, Greenland, NH. The conference’s focus on agritourism will provide attendees with the skills and knowledge needed to start or grow an agritourism business in the Granite State. Her talk will specifically address the aspect of working with local government to support farms.
  • December 6, 2019 Pre-conference Cattle Handling Facilities, and BBQ in the Garland Area . afternoon and evening.
  • December 7, 2019 Cattlemen's College, Penobscot County Extension Office, 307 Maine Ave. (by the airport) Bangor ME. 8 am to 3 pm. How to build a cheap scale for small scale beef farms. More information later.
  • November 21, 2019 Seafood HACCP Alliance Segment II, 7:45 am to 5 pm, Penobscot County Extension Office, Bangor. $100. Registration required.
  • November 23, 24, 2019 Maine Harvest Festival, Cross Insurance Center, Bangor.
  • December 10-12: New England Vegetable and Fruit Conference, Manchester, NH.
  • December 18, 2019 Nxlevel Business Planning Training for Farmers, Maine Dept of Ag, Conservation and Forestry, Augusta.
  • January 14-16, 2020: State of Maine Agricultural Trades Show, Augusta, ME.
Newsletter Subscription Information

The Central Maine Farming Newsletter (CMFN), now received by over 900 readers, has been offered as an educational resource by the University of Maine Cooperative Extension for over 15 years. On January 1, 2015 the CMFN transitioned to electronic-only delivery. There is still three ways to receive the CMFN from your local UMaine Extension:

  1. Central Maine Farming Newsletter remains available online for free! You can sign up to receive the newsletter through your email or view the archived issues anytime at at this website If you currently do not have an email, you can get one for free from several email hosts. If you do not have a computer, community libraries have computers for you to use to access information on the Internet and to view your email.
  2. Those with no email can opt to pay an annual subscription to receive the newsletters monthly for $15/year by contacting your County office.
  3. A third option is to come into the Piscataquis or Penobscot County Extension Offices and pick up a free printed copy of the newsletter.

We appreciate our readers referring others to the newsletter, and sharing it with their family and friends. Thank you for your continued support of the CMFN, providing valuable agricultural information from Extension for folks in the central Maine area since 2003.
The University of Maine Cooperative Extension is the major educational outreach program of the University of Maine with offices statewide. UMaine Extension provides Maine people with research-based educational programs to help them live fuller, more productive lives.

Mention or display of a trademark, proprietary product, or firm in text or figures does not constitute an endorsement and does not imply approval to the exclusion of other suitable products or firms.
Local Weather Anytime
Many farming activities are driven by the weather. Our local National Weather Service in Caribou has meteorologists on staff 24 hours a day. They are willing to talk with you about rain predictions for your town. Give them a call at 492-0180. Or check out their online detailed maps at  http://www.weather.gov/car/.

Need Pesticide Credits

Need Pesticide credits?  Check out the  Maine Board of Pesticide credit calendar.   Many approved pesticide applicator re-certification programs are listed. 

Edited by 
Donna Coffin, Extension Educator

The goal of the Central Maine Farming Newsletter is to provide timely information on the production and marketing of crops and livestock grown in central Maine.

The University of Maine does not discriminate on the grounds of race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, including transgender status and gender expression, national origin, citizenship status, age, disability, genetic information or veteran status in employment, education, and all other programs and activities. The following person has been designated to handle inquiries regarding non-discrimination policies: Director, Office of Equal Opportunity, 101 North Stevens Hall, 207.581.1226.
Photos: Donna Coffin unless indicated otherwise.
Penobscot County Office
Piscataquis County Office
Penobscot County Office -  website  
Open Monday - Friday 8 am to 4:30 pm
307 Maine Ave Bangor, ME 04401 207-942-7396 or 800-287-1485

Piscataquis County Office -  website  
Open Monday, Thursday, Friday 8 am to 4:30 pm
Open By-chance on Wednesday, Closed Tuesday 
165 East Main St Dover-Foxcroft, ME 04426 207-564-3301 or 800-287-1491