News

Enroll in Conservation Reserve Programs by Aug. 23

Farmers and ranchers with expiring contracts with the Conservation Reserve Program, or who are interested in enrolling land in the Continuous Conservation Reserve Program (CCRP) should take note of an upcoming deadline. The U.S. Department of Agriculture - Farm Service Agency has announced the deadline to enroll in either the Conservation Reserve Program - Transition Incentive Program (CRP-TIP) or CCRP is set for Aug. 23, 2019.

New cottage food law supports Nebraska’s entrepreneurs

In 2015, a working group gathered to talk about the challenges Nebraska food consumers and producers alike face, and how to best address them.

In 2019, Nebraska Legislative Bill (LB) 304 was passed, expanding the state’s food laws to facilitate growth among cottage food entrepreneurs, or those who bake and prepare certain foods in their home kitchens and sell them on a small scale.

Transplanted gardener welcomed at Omaha Nation Farmers Market

Tomas Delacruz lives north of Macy, Nebraska, where his two acres of land host an ever-expanding garden. 

Growing up in Mexico, Tomas and his family harvested chilies and peppers. Now, living in Nebraska, he continues to grow those familiar staples, and has added a plethora of other vegetables to his garden, some of which he was able to sell last summer. 

For assistance in selling his produce, Tomas reached out to former Center for Rural Affairs community food associate, Bounthy Parker, who helped run the Omaha Reservation Community Farmers Market, in Macy and Walthill.

Staff spotlight: Anna’s sights set on small business training

Born and raised on a cattle ranch near a small town in southeastern Idaho, Anna Pratt learned to drive on country back roads, charged purchases to a tab at local farm supply stores, and took part in the challenges and rewards of a family-owned business.

In other words, she’s no stranger to rural America.

A new member of the Center for Rural Affairs team, Anna is the Women’s Business Center director, and is excited about her new role.

Beekeeping program launches

Those interested in beekeeping have a new learning opportunity.

The Center for Rural Affairs and University of Nebraska-Lincoln are partnering to offer Great Plains Master Beekeeping, a regional beekeeper training and certification program.

The program’s purpose is to increase the amount of well-educated beekeepers, to provide new and experienced beekeepers with resources to continue their education, and to help others become advocates for bees.

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