CALENDAR OF WINTER EDUCATIONAL MEETINGS
Jan 4. New England Vegetable and Berry Growers Assn. meeting. Comfort
Inn, Chicopee MA.
Registration: $10. Dom Marini 508-378-2546
10:00 Hydroponic Greenhouse Tomato Cultivar Trials, Martin Ghent, CT Ag. Expt. Station.
10:30 Striped Cucumber and Bacterial Wilt in Pumpkins, Ruth Hazzard, UMass Extension
11:00 Use of Reflective Mulch in Tomato Production, Brent Loy, Univ. of NH
11:30 How Vermont Growers Battle Bugs and Weeds, Vern Grubinger, UVM Extension
12:00 Lunch - by reservation only
1:15 Value-Added Produce, Manuel Costa, Costa Fruit and Produce Co.
1:45 New Vegetable Varieties, Tom Lewandowski, Harris Seed Co.
2:15 Weed Control in Corn under Plastic, Rich Bonanno, UMass Extension
2:45 Food Safety and Sanitation, Rita Brennan Olson, UMass
Jan. 15-17. New Jersey Vegetable Meeting and Trade Show. Taj Mahal, Atlantic City. Phil Traino 856-985-4382
Jan. 23-26. Ecological Farming Conference, Asilomar CA. 831-763-2111.www.eco-farm.org
Jan. 25-27. NOFA-NY Annual Conference, Holiday Inn Waterloo-Seneca Falls. Keynoter is Vermont grower Will Stevens. 518-734-5495
Jan. 30. Vermont Vegetable and Berry Growers Farm Show Meeting. 1-4 pm. Barre.
Feb. 1. Farmer-to-Farmer Workshop: "Increase Your Profit: Financial Management for Established Farmers" led by Richard Wiswall, Vermont organic vegetable farmer. Ballston Spa, near Saratoga Springs, NY. $30 to $50 sliding scale fee includes lunch. Regional Farm & Food Project, (518) 427-6537, email@example.com, or see www.capital.net/~farmfood/
Feb. 2-3. Farmer-to-Farmer Workshop: "Creating Healthy Soils & Overcoming Weeds: Biological Principles for Agriculture". Led by farmers Anne and Eric Nordell and Klaas and Mary-Howell Martens; Cornell University weed ecologist Chuck Mohler; Michigan biological agricultural consultant Joe Scrimger; with farmer Linda Hildebrand. Ballston Spa, near Saratoga Springs, NY. $100 to $150 includes meals. Regional Farm & Food Project (see above)
Feb. 12-14. New York Vegetable and Berry Conference. Liverpool NY (near Syracuse) Holiday Inn. 607-539-7648
Feb 16. NOFA-VT Winter Conference. Vermont Technical College, Randolph Center. 802-434-4122
Feb. 19. Vermont Vegetable and Berry Growers Annual Meeting. Rutland
more details to come. Vern Grubinger 802-257-7967
Feb. 23-26. Plasticulture 2002: 30th National Agricultural Plastics Congress. DoubleTree, San Diego CA. Pat Heuser 717-238-9762. www.plasticulture.org
Feb 26-28. Ontario Berry Growers Association and Horticultural Crops Conference, Hamilton Convention Center, Hamilton. Deborah Melito 519-763-6320. www.ontariohortcrops.org
March 7 (not the 6th as previously advertised). VT/NH/ME Potato Meeting. White River Junction area. More info to come. Vern Grubinger 802-257-7967
ECO-LABEL IDENTIFIES ‘GREEN’ PRODUCTS
‘Protected Harvest’ is a new eco-label now being introduced into grocery stores. Protected Harvest is a collaboration between farmers, scientists and environmental advocates. Farmers in the program minimize their use of toxic pesticides by using Biologically Integrated Pest Management (BioIPM) practices. The first products to be certified under the Protected Harvest label are potatoes from Wisconsin, marketed under the Healthy Grown brand. The World Wildlife Fund (WWF) is allowing the WWF logo to be placed on Protected Harvest certified bags of Wisconsin potatoes. To qualify for Protected Harvest certification, growers must achieve a minimum number of points in two different groups of standards: production and toxicity score. For example, participants rotate their fields and they must eliminate the use of 12 toxic pesticides. All of the standards and supporting documents are available on the website: www.protectedharvest.org (FYI, the Vermont Vegetable and Berry ‘Ecologically Grown’ standards can be seen at: www.uvm.edu/vtvegandberry).
VT VEG AND BERRY GROWERS REFINE MISSION, GOALS
At the recent Board of Directors meeting, the following draft was developed.
A final version will be presented at the Annual Meeting in February. Members
of the Association should direct comments or suggestions to President Hank
Bissell at: firstname.lastname@example.org Mission: To promote the economic,
environmental and social sustainability of vegetable and berry farming
in Vermont through education, promotion and communication among growers.
Goals: To bring new farmers into the industry. To increase consumer spending
on local produce. To provide opportunities for growers to meet one another.
To help farmers improve their financial management. To improve management
of soil and water. To provide a forum for the exchange of technical information