Assist New Milford in protecting and preserving our surviving farmlands

Largest Dairy Farm in Northeast U.S. Powers Sustainability with Innovative Solar Energy Installation from Maxeon

Largest Dairy Farm in Northeast U.S. Powers Sustainability with Innovative Solar Energy Installation from Maxeon

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Largest Dairy Farm in Northeast U.S. Powers Sustainability with Innovative Solar Energy Installation from Maxeon

Oakridge Dairy in Connecticut is home to nearly 3,000 cows and includes a massive, 8-acre barn topped with 752 solar panels capable of generating up to 1,200 kilowatt hours of energy per day. System designer and installer Earthlight Technologies optimized the system’s power generation with Maxeon high efficiency solar panels that enable clean energy to meet Oakridge’s significant electricity needs.

Read more here:

Largest Dairy Farm in Northeast U.S. Powers Sustainability with Innovative Solar Energy Installation from Maxeon (yahoo.com)

Berkshire – Taconic Grazing Workshop with Sarah Flack July 15-16

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Berkshire – Taconic Grazing Workshop with Sarah Flack July 15-16

BERKSHIRE-TACONIC GRAZING TOUR: JULY 15/16
This grazing workshop aims to educate grazing land managers and new graziers about sustainable grazing techniques, demonstrate different approaches to climate-smart grazing, and identify opportunities to improve grazing practices. We also hope that this workshop is a place for graziers to connect with each other and with conservation technicians to create ongoing grazing education support networks.
Monday, July 15th will feature grass-based and organic livestock production consultant Sarah Flack, providing a Sustainable Grazing Management workshop at Gould Farm in Monterey, MA, followed by guided pasture walks at Gould Farm and at The Farm in New Marlborough, MA. As the workshop concludes for the day, we invite you to stay and join us for a networking dinner BBQ at The Farm in New Marlborough, MA, featuring their meats, local side dishes and beverages.
On Tuesday, July 16th Sarah Flack will guide a tour to 3 grass-fed livestock farms across the Taconic region of NY:
Chaseholm Farm, Pine Plains, NY
Kinderhook Farm, Valatie, NY
Harrier Fields Farm, Schodack Landing, NY
Lunch, coffee & snacks will be provided on both days, along with the post-workshop networking dinner on July 15th. Registration is $35, or $15 for limited resource and BIPOC farmers. Learn more here: https://berkshiregrown.org/workshops/

CT Land Conservation Council Climate Smart Land Stewardship Grants

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CT Land Conservation Council Climate Smart Land Stewardship Grants

CLIMATE SMART PROGRAMMING
INTRODUCING CONNECTICUT LAND CONSERVATION COUNCIL’S NEW CLIMATE-SMART STEWARDSHIP PROGRAM
The Connecticut Land Conservation Council (CLCC) was awarded funds from the Connecticut Department of Agriculture this past spring, and CLCC has been hard at work developing its Climate Smart Land Stewardship grant program. CLCC is thrilled to officially launch this grant program, which makes $500,000 available to land trusts in the form of planning and implementation grants.
Planning Grants – Up to $8,000
Designed for organizations in the early stages of developing a climate-smart land stewardship project, these grants can fund the background research and plan development needed to implement a climate-smart project. Examples include developing forest management plans, pollinator planting plans, or work plans for implementing specific climate-smart practices.
Implementation Grants – Up to $50,000
Larger grants will be available to assist land trusts with implementing these climate-smart practices on their preserves. They fund activities related to the on-the-ground implementation of climate-smart practices and may fund the initiation of new projects and/or the continuation of existing projects. Scroll down for samples of climate-smart practices that your land trust might wish to consider.
Who is Eligible?
Eligible applicants must be tax-exempt organizations with a mission dedicated to land conservation and/or stewardship of conserved lands in Connecticut. Projects must be located within the state of Connecticut on land owned in fee by the applicant.
Together, these programs will increase the number of acres managed using climate-smart practices, and encourage future climate-smart management practices among Connecticut’s land trusts.
Important Dates
In 2024, applications will be reviewed quarterly. Submission deadlines are at 5:00pm on:
August 1, 2024
November 1, 2024
Funding decisions are anticipated approximately six weeks after application deadlines.
More Information and Application Instructions:

UConn Extension Poultry Seminar May 24, Vernon CT

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UConn Extension Poultry Seminar May 24, Vernon CT

UCONN EXTENSION POULTRY SEMINAR
Wings of Wisdom: Fostering Sustainable Poultry Innovation in Connecticut through Academic-Community Collaboration

Friday, May 24, 2024, 10:00am – 4:00pm
Tolland County Extension Center (24, Hyde Avenue, Vernon, CT)
Lunch will be from 12:30-1:00 pm, afternoon session will start around 1:00 pm. Registration is free, lunch is included.

Morning Session: (geared towards students, 4-H & FFA members and educators) Introduction of basic poultry management, poultry health and diseases, interventions to improve the health and production of chickens.

Afternoon Session: (geared towards farmers & processors) Small Farm processing, CT Poultry Association updates, question and answer forum with CT department of Ag speakers.

Contact Indu if any questions or if you require reasonable accommodations for a disability. Email : indu.upadhyaya@uconn.edu or call 860-786-8191.

Solid Ground, CT NOFA and CT Farmers Alliance Climate Smart Programming On-Farm Field Days

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Solid Ground, CT NOFA and CT Farmers Alliance Offering (5) Climate Smart Programming On-Farm Field Days 

 

CLIMATE SMART FIELD DAYS
Solid Ground is partnering up with CT NOFA and New CT Farmers Alliance to put together some really great Climate Smart Field Days this spring!  All of these field days are made possible by the Transition to Organic Partnership Program (TOPP), a national program that helps farmers navigate the ins and outs of certification, and provides mentorships and technical assistance to those who are considering organic certification. USDA Organic Transition Initiative and the Transition to Organic Partnership Program.

All of these events are ON FARMS throughout the state, where the practices that we are talking about are taking place so you can see the topics in action.  Some of the events even include a free lunch!  So choose the ones that look most interesting and sign up.

High Tunnels: How to get and use them
Date: Saturday, April 6, 2024
Time: 10am – 2pm
Location: Star Light Gardens, 85 School St, Middlefield, CT 06455

 

High tunnels can provide farmers with many benefits, such as longer growing season, reduction of environmental stress, temperature and moisture control, among others.  The Field Day will cover climate smart high tunnel production practices and benefits. There will also be a discussion of how to get funding to install your own high tunnel. Lunch will be provided.

 

 


Safe & Efficient Water Management
Date: Sunday, April 28, 2024
Time: 1pm – 4pm
Location: Russo’s Roots Farm, 289 North Society Road, Canterbury

 

Too much water? Not enough water? Climate change in Connecticut continues to impact farms every year and incorporating different water management techniques can mean the difference between a successful season and not. Libby from Russo’s Roots will go over the different water management techniques used on their farm, water sources, using timers for watering, and the different nozzles they use when doing overhead watering. We’ll also touch on what hasn’t worked in the past and changes they’d like to make in the future.

 

 


Energy Efficiency on the Farm
Date: Sunday, May 5, 2024
Time: 1pm – 4pm
Location: Four Root Farm, 257 Tater Hill Road, East Haddam

 

Ridge vents? Shade cloths? As temperatures continue to rise, finding ways to protect your crops in the high heat of the season is just one more thing for farmers to worry about, including the raising energy bills! Implementing new strategies on the farm can be expensive so learn about what’s out there before making that big purchase. Aaron from Four Root Farm will go over some of the techniques they’ve implemented over the years to help with Energy Efficiency on the farm and the benefits they’ve seen as a result.

 

 


Soil Health Assessment 3 Ways: Biological, Chemical, Physical
Date: Saturday, May 11, 2024
Time: 10am – 2pm
Location: Sunset Farm, 1057 Andrew Mountain Rd, Naugatuck, CT 06770
We will break down the various ways we study soil to get a complete picture of how well our soil functions as a living ecosystem.  The Field Day will cover the various testing methods that evaluate the physical structure of soil, chemical composition and biological activity as well as address how these methods of testing can be incorporated into your soil management plan.   Lunch will be provided.

 

 


Soil Health Benefits of No-Till Production
Date: Sunday, June 2, 2024
Time: 1pm – 4pm
Location: Sweet Acre Farm, Lebanon

 

Are you thinking of trying out some new soil health practices on your farm? Join us at Sweet Acre Farm to learn about what practices they’ve implemented over the years and the changes they’re seeing in their soil. They’ll discuss low/no-till methods, cover crops, field rotation, and how they’ve begun to integrate their flock of chickens into their field plans.

 

USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service Climate Smart Grant Applications due May 24, 2024

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USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service Climate Smart Grant applications due May 24, 2024

FUNDS AVAILABLE FOR FY2024 CONSERVATION INNOVATION GRANT PROGRAM IN CONNECTICUT
CIG tractor in a field

The USDA-Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) in Connecticut has announced the availability of funding for FY2024 Conservation Innovation Grants (CIG). This funding opportunity seeks to spark the Climate Smart development and adoption of cutting-edge conservation technologies and approaches for farmers and landowners.

Applicants must submit their applications via Grants.gov by 11:59 pm Eastern Time on May 24, 2024. For technical issues with Grants.gov, contact Grants.gov Applicant Support at 1-800-518-4726 or support@grants.gov. Awarding agency staff cannot support applicants regarding Grants.gov accounts. Please limit questions to those regarding specific information contained in this Notice of Funding (such as dates, page numbers, clarification of discrepancies, etc.). Questions related to eligibility, or the merits of a specific proposal will not be addressed.

Applicants are encouraged to visit the Connecticut State CIG website to learn more about the CIG program. This grant is being funded by the Inflation Reduction Act (IRA) Environmental Incentives Quality Program. Through this funding, NRCS seeks to benefit the climate by reducing greenhouse gas emissions and the producer by providing innovative assistance to improve their farm, urban operation or forest land.

For new users of Grants.gov, while an account is not required to download an NFO and related documents, it is required to submit an application. If your organization has never submitted an application via Grants.gov, please be aware there are several steps you must take to register. Visit the registering an organization section. Completing these steps can take a significant amount of time, so plan accordingly.

SUMMARY INFORMATION:

Federal Awarding Agency Name: U.S. Department of Agriculture – Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS), Commodity Credit Corporation (CCC)

Notice of Funding Opportunity Title: Announcement for Program Funding for NRCS’ Conservation Innovation Grants (CIG) for Federal fiscal year (FY) 2024 – Connecticut

Notice of Funding Opportunity Number: USDA-NRCS-CT-CIG-24-NOFO0001403

Assistance Listing: This program is listed in the Assistance Listing numbers (previously referred to as the Catalog of Federal Financial Assistance (CFDA)) on Sam.gov under 10.912, Environmental Quality Incentives Program.

SAM is a web-based, government-wide application that collects, validates, stores, and disseminates business information about the federal government’s trading partners in support of the contract awards, grants, and electronic payment processes.

NRCS is announcing the availability of Conservation Innovation Grants (CIG) state program funding to stimulate the development and adoption of innovative conservation approaches and technologies. Applications are accepted from eligible entities for projects carried out in the State of Connecticut. A total of up to $500,000 is available for the Connecticut CIG competition in FY2024. All non-federal entities and individuals are invited to apply, with the sole exception of federal agencies. Projects may be between one and three years in duration. The maximum award amount for a single award in FY2024 is $250,000.

Women’s Business Development Council (WBDC) Ignite Grants due March 14, 2024

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Women’s Business Development Council (WBDC) Ignite Grants due March 14, 2024

The Women’s Business Development Council (WBDC) is excited to announce the next round of our Ignite Grant Program, which will open February 1, 2024! The deadline to apply is March 14, 2024. The application will also be offered in Spanish.

Formerly known as the Equity Match Grant, Ignite is designed to help women-owned businesses grow. The program offers grants of up to $10,000 to women-owned businesses in the state of Connecticut who have been in business for 2 or more years and have revenues between $25K and $2 million.  Since the start of the program, we have distributed 276 grants of over $2.5 million to women-owned businesses in Connecticut.

For additional information and more details on the program, please visit our website.

Businesses must:

  • be at least 51% woman-owned
  • have been established for at least two years
  • have a record of annual sales/revenue in the last 12 months greater than $25,000 and less than $2,000,000
  • be headquartered in CT, registered in the state of CT, and owned by a CT resident
  • be owned by a woman at least 18 years old
  • be in good standing with the CT Department of Revenue Services (DRS)
  • have an established business checking account
  • utilize a formal, digital bookkeeping/financial system (e.g., QuickBooks)
  • be a for-profit business
  • Have invested at least $2,500 into the business in the last 12 months (unless business is located in a distressed municipality)
Information Sessions:
  • Wednesday, February 7, 11am-12pm
  • Monday, February 12, 5:30-6:30pm
  • Wednesday, February 21, 5-6pm
  • Thursday, February 29, 1-2pm
  • Wednesday, March 6, 10-11am
For more information on the application process, or to register for an upcoming information session, click here.