The Transition Incentive Program (TIP) is a recently announced USDA program implemented by the Farm Service Agency (FSA). The Program provides annual rental payments for up to two additional years after the date of the expiration of a farmer’s Conservation Reserve Program (CRP) contract, provded the transition is not to a family member. The objective of the program is to transition expiring CRP land from a retired or retiring owner or operator to a beginning or socially disadvantaged farmer to return land to production for sustainable grazing or crop production. Enrollment in TIP is on a continuous basis and enrollment can begin one year before the expiration date of a CRP contract. For a Fact Sheet on TIP go to http://www.fsa.usda.gov/Internet/FSA_File/tipfactsheet.pdf or visit your county’s USDA Farm Service Agency which can be located at http://offices.sc.egov.usda.gov/locator/app?state=oh&agency=fsa or call the State office at 614-255-2441.
Ohio State University Department of Agricultural, Environmental and Development Economics just released survey results on U.S. farmers’ attitudes and opinions about used farm machinery and equipment sales via auction, dealer, classified ad and the internet. More than 2,500 U.S. farmers responded. Most buyers bought from dealerships (55%), with 16% purchasing at auctions and 10% through classified ads. Less than 5% bought from internet auctions or ads. Most sellers relied upon personal contacts or simple for-sale signs (43%) with others using auctions (22%) and classified ads (22%). Less than 5% sold via internet. For the executive summary go to http://aede.osu.edu/people/roe.30/FME/Executive%20Summary2.pdf
Ohio State University operates an Urban Agriculture Program, for information about it call 216-429-8200 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org or go to the website http://urbanprograms.osu.edu. City Fresh is noteworthy and includes 14 Northeast Ohio community partners, with the New Agrarian Center and OSUE Cuyahoga County as collaborating organizations. Akron GROWs, a community gardening program offers about 100 plots. Contact 330-2090 or visit Akron’s Web site at www.ci.akron.oh.us. Toledo GROWs is a community outreach gardening program of the Toledo Botanical Garden. Go to http://www.toledogarden.org/content/toledogrows/ or call 419-536-5563 .
Check out the website City Farmer News which has an international focus; search for urban farms in the United States – www.cityfarmer.info
This Web site was designed for aspiring and beginning farmers, especially those interested in local food production, so they could learn about the diverse resources available to help develop their farming competence. During July 2010 users of the website who are aspiring and beginning farmers are invited to offer recommendations for improving the website to better meet your needs.
Tracts of land, 10 acres or larger, can qualify for CAUV if they are devoted exclusively to commercial agricultural use. Smaller farms are eleigible if the average yearly gross farm incomes for the past three years $2,500+ from agricultural products. Recent large increases in the CAUV of Ohio farmland have resulted in high property taxes for most farmland owners. Read the full article available at http://ohioagmanager.osu.edu/news/index.php#cauv
Small Dairy Resource Book is a thorough collection of resources for farm families interested in capitalizing on value-added dairy products. The pros and cons of 150+ resources – books, periodicals, videos, Web sites and others are discussed by categories including cheesemaking, ice cream, butter, food safety, and must more. Updated in 2010. Download free at www.sare.org/publications/dairyresource.htm
The July 20-23, 2010 conference of this Network of agricultural professionals, farmers, citizens, and service providers will discuss and learn about exciting projects in farm transition. The conference, held in Cuyahoga Falls, OH will highlight the Countryside Initiative, a parthership between Cuyahoga Valley National Park and the Countryside Conservancy. The Initiative offers rehabilitated farms in the national part to private farmers through a competitive long-term lease. http://www.cvcountryside.org/farmland/IFTNConference.php or call 330-657-2529
Local Harvest: A Multifarm CSA Handbook is a 126-page book detailing how farmers cas use community supported agriculture cooperatives to best market their produce. Advice from former CSA growers and members on staffing, volunteer boards, distribution, legal topics, crop selection, calculating shares and adjusting to seasonal change. Profiles from around the country on multifarm CSAs. Download a free publication at www.sare.org/publications/csa.htm or order a print copy at www.sare.org/webstore or call 301-374-9696.
This year’s Series includes tours of 15 farms, 3 university research centers, and offers 10 educational workshops. Topics include specialty grains, permaculture, wind power, meat and dairy goats, poultry production and processing, herbs and honey, raised beds, winegrape production, farmland preservation, and more. To review these learning options available in multiple areas of Ohio see http://www.oeffa.us/oeffa/pdfs/OEFFA_2010farmtoursSMALL.pdf
Stay in touch with information FCS makes available on low interest loans for Beginning Farmers and Ohio farmland for sale. Subscribe to their enewsletter http://www.e-farmcredit.com/News/enewsletter/tabid/677/Default.aspx or follow them on twitter.com/farmcreditserv or become a fan on facebook.com/farmcreditservices.