Bloomington Food Policy Council

March Mushroom Madness Workshop

Learn about mushrooms from three presenters:

TRACY BRANAM – Wild mushroom harvester, on Wild mushroom hunting strategies and techniques

MARTY CROUCH –  Mushroom inspector, with Safety Tips from the Wild Mushroom Inspector

BOBBI BOOS –  Mushroom grower from LIFE Farm, on  Cultivating mushrooms

Date: 
03/31/2012
Time: 
10:00am-11:00am
Location: 
Harmony School (2nd and Woodlawn)
Cost: 
Free

Spring Seed Starting Spree Workshop

Learn how to grow your own plants this spring for your home garden at a Winter Market Workshop on Saturday!

The presenters are:

STEPHANIE SOLOMON – Garden and Nutrition Coordinator at Mother Hubbard’s Cupboard, on the Tools You Need to Germinate Seeds and Keep Them Happy

ED BURNS – Nature’s Way Worm Guy, who answers the question What Do I Amend My Soil With?

CATHY CROSSON –  of Red Rosa Farm Heirloom Seeds, on What Crops and Varieties Should I Plant?

Date: 
03/24/2012
Time: 
10:00am-11:00am
Location: 
Harmony School
Cost: 
Free

USDA's Launches 'Know Your Farmer, Know Your Food:' Initiative to Connect Consumers with Local Producers to Create New Economic Opportunities for Communities

WASHINGTON, September 15, 2009 - Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack and Deputy Secretary Kathleen Merrigan today announced a new initiative - 'Know Your Farmer, Know Your Food' - to begin a national conversation to help develop local and regional food systems and spur economic opportunity. To launch the initiative, Secretary Vilsack recorded a video to invite Americans to join the discussion and share their ideas for ways to support local agriculture. The video, one of many means by which USDA will engage in this conversation, can be viewed at USDA's YouTube channel, http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ric6K72qJ4E . Producers and consumers can comment on the 'Know Your Farmer, Know Your Food' YouTube playlist, as well as submit videos or provide comments on this initiative by e-mailing KnowYourFarmer@usda.gov.

"An American people that is more engaged with their food supply will create new income opportunities for American agriculture," said Vilsack. "Reconnecting consumers and institutions with local producers will stimulate economies in rural communities, improve access to healthy, nutritious food for our families, and decrease the amount of resources to transport our food."

The 'Know Your Farmer, Know Your Food' initiative, chaired by Deputy Secretary Merrigan, is the focus of a task force with representatives from agencies across USDA who will help better align the Department's efforts to build stronger local and regional food systems. This week alone, USDA will announce approximately $65 million in funding for 'Know Your Farmer, Know Your Food' initiatives.

"Americans are more interested in food and agriculture than at any other time since most families left the farm," said Merrigan. "'Know Your Farmer, Know Your Food' seeks to focus that conversation on supporting local and regional food systems to strengthen American agriculture by promoting sustainable agricultural practices and spurring economic opportunity in rural communities."

In the months to come, cross-cutting efforts at USDA will seek to use existing USDA programs to break down structural barriers that have inhibited local food systems from thriving. Today, USDA announced a small initial group of moves that seek to connect local production and consumption and promote local-scale sustainable operations:

  • USDA's Risk Management Agency announced $3.4 million in funding for collaborative outreach and assistance programs to socially disadvantaged and underserved farmers. These programs will support 'Know You Farmer' goals by helping producers adopt new and direct marketing practices. For example, nearly $10,000 in funding for the University of Minnesota will bring together experts on food safety and regulations for a discussion of marketing to institutions like K-12 schools, colleges, universities, hospitals and other health care facilities.
  • USDA's Food Safety and Inspection Service proposed regulations to implement a new voluntary cooperative program under which select state-inspected establishments will be eligible to ship meat and poultry products in interstate commerce. The new program was created in the 2008 Farm Bill and will provide new economic opportunities for small meat and poultry establishments, whose markets are currently limited.
  • USDA's Rural Development announced $4.4 million in grants to help 23 local business cooperatives in 19 states. The member-driven and member-owned cooperative business model has been successful for rural enterprises, and bring rural communities closer to the process of moving from production-to-consumption as they work to improve their products and expand their appeal in the marketplace.
  • USDA's Rural Development will also announce a Rural Business Opportunity Grant in the amount of $150,000 to the Northwest Food Processors Association. The grant will strengthen the relationship between local food processors and customers in parts of Idaho, Oregon and Washington, and will also help the group reduce energy consumption, a major cost for food processors.

As the 'Know Your Farmer, Know Your Food' initiative evolves, USDA will continue to build on the momentum and ideas from the 2008 Farm Bill and target its existing programs and develop new ones to pursue sustainable agriculture and support for local and regional food systems.

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USDA is an equal opportunity provider, employer and lender. To file a complaint of discrimination, write: USDA, Director, Office of Civil Rights, 1400 Independence Ave., S.W., Washington, D.C. 20250-9410 or call (800) 795-3272 (voice), or (202) 720-6382 (TDD).

Reference: 
http://www.usda.gov/wps/portal/usda/usdahome?contentidonly=true&contentid=2009/09/0440.xml

Annual Wylie House Seed Sale

Our annual Seed Sale will be held on the main floor of the new Morton C. Bradley, Jr. Education Center on Saturday, March 3, from 10 a.m. till 4 p.m. Wylie House heirloom seeds are grown on-site without the aid of chemicals, have been germination tested, and cost $1.50 per packet. The 72 varieties of vegetables, herbs and flowers (see our Seeds for Purchase page) will be supplemented by approximately 50 additional varieties from Seed Savers Exchange (mostly heirloom tomatoes and peppers). Our seeds are always available for purchase during normal museum hours, but some varieties usually sell out during this one day sale.

Date: 
03/3/2012
Time: 
10:00am-4:00pm
Location: 
Wylie House (307 E. 2nd St.)
Cost: 
Free to attend

Monroe County Soil and Water Conservation District 2012 Annual Meeting and Green Fire Film Viewing

Doors open at 6pm, meal begins at 6:15pm

Movie Begins at 7:30pm

Tickets required and space is limited

Dinner is $8, film is free

Call 812-334-4325, ext. 115 to reserve a ticket

About the Film: Greenfire

The first full-length documentary film ever made about legendary environmentalist Aldo Leopold, Green Fire highlights Leopold’s extraordinary career, tracing how he shaped and influenced the modern environmental movement. Leopold remains relevant today, inspiring projects all over the country that connect people and land.Watch the trailer: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iQED4YEMx9A

Meal provided by Ivy Tech Culinary Team

Green Fire film viewing is made possible by a partnership with the USDA Forest Service

Date: 
03/22/2012
Time: 
6pm
Location: 
3122, Liberty Crossing Ballroom (former MCL Cafeteria, enter off south side)
Cost: 
Film is free, dinner is $8.00

“The Greenhorns” Film Screening

The movie “The Greenhorns” is coming to Bloomington in early March, through the Ryder Magazine and Film Series, co-sponsored by Bloomingfoods. This is “a film about young farmers, their struggle and their valor.” 

“The Greenhorns” explores “the lives of America’s young farming community—its spirit, practices, and needs. We use the terms ‘greenhorn’ and ‘young farmer’ interchangeably to refer to any farmer 57 years old or fresher,” says filmmaker Sevreine von Tscharner Fleming, the film’s director, about her film subjects. “Many thousands of growers from all kinds of backgrounds and demographics fall into this category.”  It is the filmmaker's hope that by broadcasting the stories and voices of these young farmers, we can build the case for those considering a career in agriculture - to embolden them, to entice them, and to recruit them into farming.

Ryder moviegoers can park for free, without an IU parking sticker, in the main library parking lot. Simply put a Ryder movie calendar on your dashboard and you will not be ticketed. (This only works during movie screenings.) Enter the parking lot off of Jordan just south of 10th Street. You’ll find empty parking spaces in the lanes farthest from the library (and closest to Fine Arts).

To reach the screening rooms enter the IU Fine Arts building through the second floor doors off of the circular drive. Look to your left and you’ll see the upstairs Fine Arts theater. To reach the downstairs theater go to the end of the hall and walk down the stairs. You’ll find the theater on your right.

Here’s the schedule:

Friday Mar 02 2012

downstairs at IU Fine Arts 7:00 pm

Saturday Mar 03 2012

downstairs at IU Fine Arts 7:00 pm

Sunday Mar 04 2012

Bear’s Place 7:00 pm

Thursday Mar 08 2012

FARMBloomington 6:30 pm

Friday Mar 09 2012

downstairs at IU Fine Arts 7:00 pm

Saturday Mar 10 2012

downstairs at IU Fine Arts 7:00 pm

Date: 
Repeating in March, see above
Time: 
Various, see above
Location: 
Various, see above
Cost: 
$5.00

Learn about Permaculture with Keith Johnson

As we drift into spring and begin contemplating the design and content of our gardens, it's an ideal time to investigate the role that permacultural practices might play. Local expert Keith Johnson will be offering a 2-hour introduction on Tuesday, March 6th, from 7 to 9:00 p.m. in the auditorium of the public library. Maple Heights, Near West Side, Prospect Hill and McDoel Gardens neighborhood associations are also sponsors of this event.  Permaculture is an ecological design system for sustainability in all aspects of human endeavor. It teaches us how build natural homes, grow our own food, restore diminished landscapes, catch rainwater, tend animals, and much more.

Keith is an experienced permaculture site designer and teacher who has been providing consulting advice and design since 1979. He has developed an intimate knowledge of regional landscapes, botany, soils, earthworks, natural building and other skills.

Date: 
03/06/2012
Time: 
7:00PM-9:00PM
Location: 
Monroe County Public Library
Cost: 
Free

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