2012: A Successful Year at FoFF
And With Your Support, 2013 Will Be Even Better!
Every now and then it's important to step back from the hard work in which we're immersed and take an appreciative look at where we've come. This year, we've accomplished a lot and without you, none of it would have been possible. A few highlights from the year include:
Education and Advocacy. When you support Friends of Family Farmers, you're helping make sure that folks have access to information and resources that help level the playing field for sustainable family-scale agriculture in Oregon. Your tax deductible donations support our programs and give our farmers the voice they need to be successful and economically viable. Stand with us, in person and with your checkbook, as we enter the upcoming year prepared to secure a better future for us all.
We've completed our fourth year of inFarmation(& Beer!) events, routinely drawing large crowds to learn about key and timely issues that are critical to the family farm and ranch movement in Oregon. The event is now happening monthly in Eugene as well;
We successfully secured a stay of a temporary rule that would have allowed canola in the Willamette Valley. This would have threatened organic agriculture production and the highly successful specialty seed industry in the state;
iFarm Oregon has more users than ever before and we have worked to extend our resources to immigrant and Spanish language speaking farmers;
FarmOn!, the new Oregon chapter of the National Young Farmers Coalition, was launched and connects farmers around the state for social and educational opportunities, building a strong community of future agricultural policy leaders;
To become a member, contact Lori or call us at 503-759-3276. You can also make a donation online, by visiting our website, scrolling to the bottom and clicking the "donate" button. Year end donations make a wonderful gift for you and others and we are always happy to discuss other creative charitable contributions with you as well.
ODA Files New Proposed Canola Rule
Public Hearing on January 23, 2013
In mid August, the Oregon Department of Agriculture (ODA) was blocked by the Oregon Court of Appeals from moving forward with rules to relax restrictions on planting rapeseed/canola in the Willamette Valley. During public hearings on ODA's proposed rule, strong and sustained public outcry was heard from specialty seed growers, clover producers and vegetable growers throughout the Willamette Valley who would be harmed by ODA's action. On December 14, ODA announced a new version of the rule which again weakens existing canola restrictions, as well as an additional round of public hearings.
Mark your calendars for January 23 for the public hearing at the State Fairgrounds in Salem
, and read more about the proposed new rule here
. Friends of Family Farmers remains committed to our belief that the ODA should maintain the strongest possible protections for the Willamette Valley’s economically important seed production industry, and the Valley’s large network of vegetable growers.
Things you can do:
Changes to FoFF Staff
In November, Michele Knaus, FoFF's Executive Director since 2010, left our staff to explore new avenues and interests. Michele is an extraordinary person - smart, passionate, personable and engaging - and her commitment to sustainable, seasonal, fresh and local food - and the farmers and ranchers who raise it - made her an invaluable advocate for Friends of Family Farmers. While we are sad because of Michele's departure, we are glad to know that she will continue to be involved in FoFF activities and we wish her every joy and success in her future endeavors.
Coming on as new staff, we welcome Ivan Maluski as our new Policy Director and interim Executive Director. Ivan is a family farmer in Clackamas County and brings a strong expertise in natural resource policy issues at the local, state and federal levels. We're excited to have him on board as we work to better serve and safeguard Oregon's sustainable farming future. Please join us in extending our very best to Ivan and read more about our newest addition to the FoFF family here.
Events & Offerings
Mark your calendar now to save the date for these upcoming gatherings and opportunities.
Dec. 20 - Headwaters Farm Incubator Q&A - rsvp, please (Portland)
Jan. 6 - InFARMation (and Beer!): Livestock Feed Options (Eugene)
Jan. 8 - InFARMation (and Beer!): Anthony Boutard of Ayers Creek Farm (Portland)
Jan. 12 - OSU Sheep Producer Mentor Program and Educational Seminar (Prineville)
Jan. 12 - Cascadia Grains Conference (Tacoma, WA)
Jan. 23 - Canola Public Hearing (State Fairgrounds, Salem)
Feb. 23 - 2013 Women in Agriculture Conference (Washington State)
Mar. 2 - Oregon Small Farms Conference Early Registration (Corvallis)
Mar. 18 - Family Farmer & Rancher Day at the Capitol Save the Date! (Salem)
Additional events can be viewed on our Community Calendar