NASDA e-News A publication of the National Association of State Departments of Agriculture November 3, 2009 – Issue XVII, Number 40 LEGISLATIVE AND REGULATORY NEWS: Climate Change Action Delayed in US Senate *** NASDA And State Foresters Urge Action on Methyl Bromide *** Legislation Targets Chesapeake Water Quality *** EPA Denies Ag Objections, Revokes Carbofuran Tolerances *** USDA awards $49 million specialty crop block grants, FY10 NOFA expected soon *** China Opens Market to Pork Imports *** Senate Panel to Hold Confirmation Hearings on Trade Nominee *** Dairy Cooperatives Begin 4th Heard Retirement *** STATE NEWS: KY: Department of Agriculture staff ready to work North American livestock expo *** NY: Governor Paterson announces north country power discount program *** MI: Department of Agriculture practices full-scale rapid response *** MN: Morris cattle producers named Good Farm Neighbors *** VA: Virginia schools participate in farm to school week *** MI: Applications for pesticide notification and organic farm registries being accepted *** KY: Documentary celebrates history, resurgence of Kentucky’s grape and wine industry *** OR: Oregon announces farm to school coordinator opening ***
LEGISLATIVE AND REGULATORY NEWS: CLIMATE CHANGE ACTION DELAYED IN US SENATE Republican members of the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee boycotted a markup of the Clean Jobs and American Power Act (S. 1733), climate change legislation recently introduced by Senator Barbara Boxer (D-CA), chairwoman of the panel, and Senator John Kerry (D-MA). Citing a lack of analysis and modeling by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), the minority members chose to not appear for the markup. Even though there were no Republicans present, Chairwoman Boxer still chose to conduct the committee meeting. However, she agreed to not continue on with an official markup, and instead held a briefing for committee members from the EPA. There are still many questions of how this will all play out moving forward. One potential scenario has Majority Leader Harry Reid combining the bill that would result from Chairwoman Boxer’s panel with other components from five other committees of jurisdiction, including the Senate Agriculture Committee. Following the merge, the new legislation would be sent to the EPA for a full analysis to be conducted, which is anticipated to take five weeks. Nevertheless, it appears to be very unlikely that climate legislation will reach the Senate floor prior to the end of the year. (Contact: David Hickey) NASDA AND STATE FORESTERS URGE ACTION ON METHYL BROMIDE NASDA and the National Association of State Foresters (NASF) sent a joint letter to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) last week regarding the Reregistration Eligibility Decisions (RED) for methyl bromide and other soil fumigants. The letter follows a vote by NASDA members at the 2009 annual meeting in Alabama expressing concerns with EPA’s actions related to the soil fumigant RED. The letter expressed concerns with label changes EPA is requiring under the RED and highlighted NASDA and NASF's concerns about limiting access to methyl bromide in light of the fact that no effective alternative exists. The letter emphasized the deep concern that the new restrictions on methyl bromide and other soil fumigants will not provide growers or state quarantine programs adequate time to
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identify suitable alternatives. A copy of the letter is available online at www.nasda.org. (By: Preston Asay; Policy Contact: Nathan Bowen) LEGISLATION TARGETS CHESAPEAKE WATER QUALITY Sen. Ben Cardin (D-MD) introduced legislation (S. 1816) that would dramatically expand the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) authority under the Clean Water Act (CWA) to address water quality issues in the Chesapeake Bay. If passed, S. 1816 would give EPA sweeping authority to issue permits, require state action, and abrogate existing agriculture exemptions in the CWA. Earlier this year, President Obama signed an executive order calling on federal agencies to protect the Chesapeake Bay. As a result, EPA has begun targeting the area’s larger concentrated animal feeding operations (CAFOS), more strictly enforcing the new permitting rules. Under the proposed legislation, EPA would establish Total Maximum Daily Loads (TMDL) for both point and nonpoint sources including atmospheric deposition, agricultural runoff, and storm water, which currently does not require a permit under CWA. EPA will prohibit any net increase in nitrogen, phosphorus, and sediment loads above allocated levels specified in TDML. Any new sources will require offsets at a margin of 2 to 1. The bill also authorizes states to issue permits “for any pollution source the Chesapeake Bay State determines necessary.” The bill provides $80 million in federal implementation grants, of which 20% would go to help farmers and foresters implement conservation practices. States directly impacted by the legislation include Maryland, Virginia, Pennsylvania, Delaware, New York, West Virginia and the District of Columbia. However, elements of this bill could be precedentsetting for future attempts to address water quality issues nationally. (By Ethan Mathews; Policy Contact: Nathan Bowen) EPA DENIES AG OBJECTIONS, REVOKES CARBOFURAN TOLERANCES The Environmental Protection Agency last week began implementing its May 2009 final rule revoking tolerances, or residue limits, for the pesticide carbofuran. Since the tolerances are being revoked, EPA warned growers that carbofuran should not be applied to any food crops after December 31, 2009. Use of carbofuran after this date could result in adulterated food products, which would be subject to enforcement by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. NASDA in 2008 adopted a resolution urging the Environmental Protection Agency not to cancel the registration of a widely-used pesticide until effective, alternative products are available. (Contact: Nathan Bowen) USDA AWARDS $49 MILLION SPECIALTY CROP BLOCK GRANTS, FY10 NOFA EXPECTED SOON Agriculture Deputy Secretary Kathleen Merrigan recently announced the award of 55 grants totaling approximately $49 million for 745 projects to enhance the competitiveness of specialty crops. Each state, the District of Columbia, the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, Guam, the U.S. Virgin Islands, and the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands developed program plans to carry out the projects. The USDA-selected projects included ones that increased the public’s nutrition knowledge and consumption of specialty crops; improved efficiency and reduced costs of distribution systems. Other projects include those that assist in the development of “Good Agricultural, Good Handling and Good Manufacturing” practices, including cost share arrangements for funding audits of small farmer, packer and processor systems; invest in specialty crop research; enhance food safety; develop new and
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improved specialty crop varieties; eradicate pest and plant health issues; and foster organic and sustainable production practices. States are awaiting the announcement of the Notice of Funding Availability (NOFA) for the FY2010 Specialty Crops Block Grant – Farm Bill Program, which is expected to be this month. In the past two years, the NOFA has been delayed well into the Fiscal Year, which limits the time states have to raise awareness of the program and help prospective participants with the process. NASDA supports a timely NOFA. More information, including a summary of the FY2009 grants, can be found at www.ams.usda.gov. (Contact: Amy Mann) CHINA OPENS MARKET TO PORK IMPORTS China has agreed to allow US imports of pork as a result of recent trade discussions between the two nations during the US-China Joint Commission on Commerce and Trade. The agreement is seen as a success for US pork producers, as China represents one of the largest potential export markets. USDA announced Wednesday that the average cash price for ham increased $4.84 to $55.69 per hundredweight. (Contact: Amy Mann) SENATE PANEL TO HOLD CONFIRMATION HEARINGS ON TRADE NOMINEE Islam "Isi" Siddiqui, who has been nominated by President Barack Obama to the position of chief agricultural trade negotiator at the USTR will appear before the Senate Finance Committee for his confirmation hearing this week. Environmental groups have asked the Senate not to confirm Siddiqui, who for the past eight years has worked as a vice president at Croplife America, a crop protection association that represents the plant science industry. (Contact: Amy Mann) DAIRY COOPERATIVES BEGIN 4TH HEARD RETIREMENT Cooperatives Working Together (CWT) is underway with its fourth herd retirement this year, accepting bids for just over 26,000 cows to be retired. According to CWT, the 26,412 cows and 517 million pounds of milk accepted in this round, combined with CWT’s three previous herd retirements since December 2008, equal a total reduction of milk production capacity of five billion pounds. (Contact: David Hickey)
STATE NEWS: KY: DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE STAFF READY TO WORK NORTH AMERICAN LIVESTOCK EXPO The world’s largest all-breed, purebred livestock exposition again will depend on Kentucky Department of Agriculture employees for a smooth 14-day run when the 36th edition of the North American International Livestock Exposition opens Nov. 7 at the Kentucky Exposition Center in Louisville. “The North American brings millions of dollars and a tremendous amount of prestige to Kentucky every year,” Agriculture Commissioner Richie Farmer said. “The Kentucky Department of Agriculture plays an important role in running the shows, protecting the animals from disease and making our visitors feel welcome. I’m proud to be a part of this outstanding event.” Staff from the Office of the State Veterinarian visually inspect each animal and validate the accompanying veterinary documentation to ensure than animal health requirements are met. Employees of the Division of Show and Fair Promotion and other divisions work the livestock shows and judging contests. The KDA’s marketing office helps arrange rooms for staff, work the show offices, and set up Kentucky Proud vendors to sell their products at the exposition.
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More than 22,000 livestock entries in 10 divisions are expected to compete for nearly $750,000 in premiums and awards at the North American. The event attracts more than 200,000 exhibitors and visitors to the Kentucky Exposition Center’s 1.2 million square feet of climate-controlled space each year. The 31st annual North American Championship Rodeo will be held Nov. 12-14 at the Kentucky Exposition Center in conjunction with the NAILE. The rodeo is the invitational finals for the Pro Rodeo Cowboys Association Great Lakes Circuit. Contestants will compete for more than $80,000 in prizes and the title of Regional Champion. For more information about the North American International Livestock Exposition and the North American Championship Rodeo, go to www.livestockexpo.org. (Contact: Bill Clary, (502) 564-1137) NY: GOVERNOR PATERSON ANNOUNCES NORTH COUNTRY POWER DISCOUNT PROGRAM Governor David A. Paterson today announced that more than 3,500 Northern New York businesses and dairy farms will receive an approximately 9 percent discount on their electric bill for the next year. The savings will only go to St. Lawrence, Jefferson and Franklin counties and will be worth an average of $1,200 for each electric customer – with some of the largest electricity users possibly saving up to $250,000 over the period. The New York Power Authority (NYPA) developed the temporary power discount program in conjunction with the Governor’s Office, and could result in up to $10 million in total savings. The Governor made the announcement at Wood Farms in Cape Vincent. “During these difficult economic times, New York’s small businesses and our dairy farms are struggling to get by, and every little bit can help. Electric bills make up one of the largest expenses for any business, and this discount can help businesses and dairy farms in St. Lawrence, Jefferson and Franklin counties make it through the next year,” said Governor Paterson. “This effort will harness one of the North Country’s greatest assets – low-cost hydropower – to provide millions of dollars in savings to North Country businesses and dairy farms, reflecting our determination to direct the benefits of the St. Lawrence-FDR project to revitalize the region’s economy.” The program is made possible through an agreement between NYPA, National Grid and New York State Electric and Gas (NYSEG) that applies temporary monthly credits to eligible customers’ electric bills. The program is funded from the sale of unused St. Lawrence-FDR power into the State’s wholesale electricity market. The power, which has been freed up due to the temporary curtailing of operations by Alcoa at the Massena East plant, is from a block of 490 megawatts of electricity known as Preservation Power reserved under a 2005 State law for businesses in St. Lawrence, Jefferson and Franklin counties. Eligible customers will see a temporary reduction in their electricity costs for up to 12 months, most beginning with their November bills. The plan will also apply to the St. Regis Mohawk Tribe for the same designated customer groups in the Akwesasne community. Dairy farms will receive a letter from both NYPA and the Department of Agriculture and Markets in the coming days and must apply to NYPA to participate in the program. In May, the NYPA Board of Trustees authorized the North Country Power Discount Program, whose oneyear term anticipates the return of aluminum production at the Massena East smelter. This discount will be applied to the monthly utility bills of National Grid and NYSEG and will be listed as a NYPA Temporary Electricity Credit for the eligible customers. Other customers, such as dairy farms, will receive direct payments from the Power Authority. Among the Northern New York employers to benefit from the Power Discount Program are Samaritan Medical Center, Chapin Watermatics and Stature Electric, all in Watertown; Corning and St. Lawrence University, both in Canton; Clarkson University in Potsdam; and Agri-Mark in Chateaugay.
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Richard M. Kessel, NYPA President and Chief Executive Officer, said: “The electricity discount program that we’ve developed for the North Country is the kind of flexible, innovative approach that Governor Paterson has encouraged for capitalizing on the unique assets of different regions of the State to provide economic advantages to those areas. In light of the temporary idling of Alcoa’s Massena East plant, the Power Authority made a commitment to harness the hydropower that became available on a short-term basis to lower the electricity bills of other enterprises in the region.” Patrick Hooker, Commissioner of the Department of Agriculture and Markets, said: “Our dairy farmers are experiencing one of the most financially difficult times in history and need immediate relief. Governor Paterson recognizes that the only way to ensure near-term farm viability here in New York is to reduce operating costs; and this discount power program will help do just that for the dairy farmers in the North Country.” (Contact: Marissa Shorenstein, Marissa.Shorenstein@chamber.state.ny.us) MI: DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE PRACTICES FULL-SCALE RAPID RESPONSE The Michigan Department of Agriculture (MDA) continues to prepare for emergency response by participating in real-time activities such as the first bi-state exercise, funded by the Multi-State Partnership for Security in Agriculture, specifically designed to test interstate coordination and the logistics of implementing quarantine measures ordered by state animal health officials. Last week, MDA sent emergency responders to the Kansas/Oklahoma border to participate in a realtime exercise simulating the outbreak of foot-and-mouth disease (FMD) in the United States. FMD is an extremely contagious foreign animal disease of cloven-hoofed animals such as cattle, sheep, goats, pigs, bison and cervids. “In a real event, we would have to work with multiple entities at the local, state, and federal level, and this exercise was a tremendous step in understanding the resources that are available to us,” said MDA Emergency Manager Brad Deacon. “We have learned how to request help, and how to work with other local, state, and federal agencies toward a common goal.” Exercise activities were conducted in the state capitals and on the Kansas/Oklahoma border. The scenario was based on a simulated outbreak of FMD in the eastern United States. Traditionally, states have exercised their plans for responding to an outbreak within their borders, and this was a new challenge that had not been exercised in either state previously. In early October 2009, MDA also conducted a full scale exercise simulating and testing multi-agency emergency responders’ roles in the event of a highly contagious avian influenza disease outbreak. MDA partnered with the Ottawa County Emergency Manager who helped coordinate the local resources needed for the poultry disease response outbreak including perimeter and on-site security, generators, water, a mobile command center, as well as personnel to operate the tools. “As we've seen repeatedly in animal agriculture, any emergency situation is going to draw in a wide range of other agencies and disciplines,” said George House, President of the Michigan Allied Poultry Industry. “Knowing who they are, what they do, and how they oversee humane euthanasia, are all critical components to a disease outbreak response.” Disease response training opportunities are complex events and are critical to having a well-trained team of responders. MDA has completed a series of animal disease response exercises over the last several years testing a variety of capabilities including, but not limited to: bio-security, animal handling, and sample collection/chain of custody, use of 800 Megahertz radios, and incident planning and management.
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MDA conducted the October 2009 event with support from the Berlin Fair Board in Marne, Michigan State University Extension, Janssen's Farms Hatcheries, the Michigan Allied Poultry Industry, the U.S Department of Agriculture, Michigan State Police, Ottawa County Emergency Management, Ottawa County Sheriff’s Department, Marne and Ferrysburg Fire Departments, the Michigan Volunteer Defense Force, Ottawa County Road Commission, and the CAFSCO Company. “We appreciate the planning and work that went into this,” House said. “Especially the opportunity to practice a humane euthanasia technique that decreases stress and injury to poultry and that is safer for emergency responders.” For more information on agriculture emergency response in Michigan, please visit www.michigan.gov/mda. (Contact: Bridget Patrick, 517-241-2669) MN: MORRIS CATTLE PRODUCERS NAMED GOOD FARM NEIGHBORS Wulf and Sons Limousin Farms is well known in the cattle breeding arena. The Morris, Minnesota producers have sold their award-winning cattle to buyers in 25 states and six foreign countries. This month they’re being recognized, not for their breeds, but for their animal care practices and environmental stewardship as the winners of the Minnesota Department of Agriculture’s (MDA) Good Farm Neighbor Award. The cattle farm has been active since 1955 when Leonard Wulf purchased the Stevens County farm. Today, Leonard’s four sons, Jerry, Jim, Dennis and Davis Wulf and their families oversee the operation of 800 registered cows, a 4000 head feedlot, 4000 acres of crops and 1500 acres of pasture. A trained nutritionist analyzes all feedstuffs for protein, energy, vitamin and mineral requirements for their herd. Two-thirds of the Wulfs’ cattle are fed naturally, using no hormones or antibiotics. The Wulfs have worked extensively to reduce soil erosion, improve water quality and maintain wildlife habitat. This includes reducing tillage practices and planting trees as wind blocks for the cattle as well as wildlife. Jim Wulf says the open feedlot was remodeled in 2007 and has zero runoff. He says grass filter strips and an extensive rotational grazing system are other environmental management tools they’ve used successfully. Jim Wulf says it’s important for all livestock producers to take the necessary steps to be environmentally responsible. “With fewer people working in production agriculture, we need make sure the public is aware of how we do things and that we’re complying with the regulations,” he said. “We have students from South Dakota State University assisting us with soil testing right now and we always encourage research on our farm to help us improve.” Winners of the MDA’s Good Farm Neighbor Award are selected by a committee representing the University of Minnesota, the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency, the Minnesota Soybean Research and Promotion Council, the Minnesota Corn Growers Association and the MDA. Nominations can be emailed to email@example.com or mailed to Good Farm Neighbor Award, Minnesota Department of Agriculture, 625 North Robert Street, St. Paul, Minnesota, 55155. A nomination form can be downloaded online. (Contact: Margaret Hart, 651-201-6131) VA: VIRGINIA SCHOOLS PARTICIPATE IN FARM TO SCHOOL WEEK The Virginia Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services (VDACS) and the Virginia Department of Education have designated the week of November 9 – 13, 2009, as Virginia Farm to School Week. The
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agencies are encouraging all schools in the Commonwealth, kindergarten through college, to purchase, serve and promote Virginia Grown foods in their cafeterias that week. The Farm to School program (F2S) connects local farms and schools to provide improved nutrition for the students and to support local and regional farmers. VDACS established a Farm to School Web site in 2008 to promote Virginia products to educational institutions and serve as a resource to connect farms, schools and distributors. “The Farm to School program has proved to be very popular,” said Todd P. Haymore, VDACS’ Commissioner. “The logistics of getting enough product to a school in a timely fashion can be challenging, but many schools are very committed to the concept and are eager participants in the program. The number of schools participating in this special emphasis and the menus they have prepared are very impressive.” In proof of that, he offers the following examples: In Goochland County, all schools will feature a local item on each day’s menu: sweet potatoes on Monday, fresh greens on Tuesday, steamed cabbage on Thursday and apples on Friday. Wednesday’s lunch will feature an all Virginia menu: sliced pork with gravy, baked potatoes, steamed broccoli and apples. Goochland has invited a local farmer to come talk to the Middle School students. While students wait in the lunch line, they can nibble on a variety of sliced apple wedges and compare the different varieties. In the elementary schools, Virginia Cooperative Extension is providing apple coloring sheets, and students will get to display their artwork in the cafeterias. In Harrisonburg, the city schools had a Harvest Day on October 1 where most of the food items came from local farms. By the time Farm to School Week rolls around, Harrisonburg will have so many local foods on the menu routinely that they will just highlight them on menus and in their newsletter. Leanne DuBois, the State F2S Coordinator for VDACS, says that Harrisonburg City Schools are a shining example of what the F2S program can be. “Already this fall, they have purchased more than $5,000 worth of produce from the Shenandoah Valley Produce Auction. Products include apples, peppers, tomatoes, watermelons, cantaloupes, peaches, potatoes and squash. They will continue to purchase lettuce, apples, potatoes, ground beef and pork through the winter and plan to purchase fresh early crops during the spring season.” In Rappahannock County, Brenda Payne, the Food Service Director, and Trista Scheurerlein, Farm to Table Program Director, are partnering with Virginia Cooperative Extension, the Fodderstack Food Working Group, Piedmont Environmental Council’s Buy Fresh/Buy Local campaign, Jenkins Orchard, The Farm at Sunnyside and Williams Orchard to have an entirely locally-produced meal available to all students in their cafeteria lines on November 11. Local farmers will set up informational booths in school cafeterias and local farmers will eat lunch with students to discuss what it’s like to produce food for people in Rappahannock County. The schools have invited volunteers to come to the school cafeteria after school on November 10 to help peel and dice apples for the next day’s apple crisp. “Using fresh, local foods can sometimes increase the prep time required to create meals,” said Trista. “Utilizing volunteers is one way to overcome that hurdle.” She encourages all volunteers to bring their own peelers and cutting boards. For Farm-to-School Week, Augusta County Schools will serve local Asian pears and James City County will serve Virginia Grown mixed greens, winter squash and broccoli. St. Catherine’s School in Richmond is currently planning its local menu, and they have invited local farmers to visit and talk with the students about agriculture that week. Building connections between schools, students and producers throughout Virginia will provide better economic opportunities for agriculture and healthier options for children. For more information and
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resources, see the Farm to School Web site: www.vdacs.virginia.gov/marketing/farm.shtml or contact VDACS’ Marketing Division at 804.786.3530. MI: APPLICATIONS FOR PESTICIDE NOTIFICATION AND ORGANIC FARM REGISTRIES BEING ACCEPTED The Michigan Department of Agriculture (MDA) is currently accepting applications for the 2010 Pesticide Notification Registry and Certified Organic Farm Registry. These registries are published by the department each year to help protect consumers from pesticide drift and identify the location of organic certified farms The “Pesticide Notification Registry” allows a person with a physician-diagnosed condition to be notified prior to a pesticide application on turf or ornamental plants on property adjacent to the applicant. To be added to the Pesticide Notification Registry, an applicant must submit a Pesticide Notification Registry Application, Physician’s Certification Form that indicates condition or illness and additional distance requirements for notification, and forms listing adjacent and other properties within the distance of notification. Applications and supporting documents must be received no later than February 1, 2010. Renewal notices for the 69 Michigan residents that appeared on the 2009 notification registry will be mailed this fall. Michigan’s “Certified Organic Farm Registry” compiles a list of state organic farms and is provided to all commercial firms licensed in agricultural, right-of-way, or aerial pesticide application. The registry information is provided to these firms so they can identify organic farms and take the additional precautions necessary to prevent pesticide drift onto these sensitive sites. The registry is published annually on March 15 and the deadline for submitting an application for the 2010 registry is March 1, 2010. An application package for the Organic Farm Registry is available on the MDA Web site at www.michigan.gov/mda. The forms can also be obtained from MDA’s Pesticide and Plant Pest Management Division, P.O. Box 30017, Lansing, Michigan 48909 or by calling 517-241-1169. There are no fees associated with either registry. KY: DOCUMENTARY CELEBRATES HISTORY, RESURGENCE OF KENTUCKY’S GRAPE AND WINE INDUSTRY Vintage Kentucky: The Vine to Wine Experience tells the story of Kentucky’s wine industry from its status as a national leader in the 1800s, to its demise as a result of Prohibition, to its current re-emergence. The 30-minute documentary, a project by the Kentucky Grape and Wine Council and the Kentucky Department of Agriculture, will be shown statewide on KET with the first airing on Thursday, Nov. 5 at 10:30 p.m. Eastern time (dates and times of additional airings are available at www.ket.org). The film, produced by New West LLC and The PPS Group, will have its private premiere showing on Wednesday, Nov. 4 at 7 p.m. at The Kentucky Center in Louisville. “Kentucky’s history as being among the world leaders in growing grapes and producing quality wines is a fascinating story,” said Dennis Walter, president of the Kentucky Grape and Wine Council. “We want to let people know about that history, but more importantly we want them to know what’s happening now as we re-claim that history. More and more vineyards are springing up across the Commonwealth, and wonderful wines are being made and enjoyed right here. “Kentucky Proud wineries are growing all over the Commonwealth,” Agriculture Commissioner Richie Farmer said. “This documentary will introduce viewers to a few of the people who are operating these wineries and producing award-winning wines. I urge everyone to watch this program and get to know these innovative, hard-working Kentuckians.”
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Kentucky became home to the nation’s first commercial vineyard when in 1798 the Marquis de Lafayette’s winemaker, Jean-Jacques Dufour, planted what he called the “First Vineyard” on 600 acres of land in what is now Jessamine County. By the late 1800s Kentucky had become the country’s thirdlargest grape and wine producer. The industry was wiped out by Prohibition and didn’t begin its resurrection until 1976, when Kentucky lawmakers passed a bill allowing wineries to operate. Today Kentucky has more than 50 wineries and an estimated 500 acres dedicated to the growing of grapes. Vintage Kentucky: The Vine to Wine Experience is the culmination of a year’s worth of work. After the Kentucky Grape and Wine Council and the Kentucky Department of Agriculture commissioned the production, filming began in August 2008 and was completed by the end of July 2009. The film features Kentucky vineyard owners, winemakers and 10 wineries. Scientists and wine industry experts from the University of Kentucky, who have helped Kentucky farmers make the transition to growing grapes, also appear in the film. Already, the industry’s resurgence is having an impact on state tourism. Fueled by consumer interest in agritourism and the support of local farmers and businesses, visitation at Kentucky’s wineries continues to grow, and wineries offer a wide variety of experiences such as wine tastings, concerts, theme dinners, art shows and family-friendly events. To find out more about Kentucky’s grape and wine industry, go to www.kentuckywine.com. For more information about the Kentucky Department of Agriculture’s grape and wine marketing program, go to www.kyagr.com/marketing/plantmktg/grape.htm. OREGON ANNOUNCES FARM TO SCHOOL COORDINATOR OPENING The Oregon Agricultural Development & Marketing Division is recruiting for a Farm to School Coordinator. Recruitment is open competitive and is open from October 29, 2009 through November 13, 2009. Please see the complete announcement on the Oregon Department of Agriculture website.
© 2009, National Association of State Departments of Agriculture
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Published on Dec 13, 2009