Morsels – December 20, 2012

(new blog posts will resume jan. 2 – merry christmas & happy new year!    -kw)

Holiday Gift Ideas from Good Food Neighborhood & PASA

(From Hannah Smith of Good Food Neighborhood & Michele Gauger of PASA)

Ideas for holiday gifts, from PASA memberships and Buy Fresh Buy Local gear to Tait Farm specialty baskets, all supporting the Pennsylvania Association for Sustainable Agriculture. Check out PASA’s GOOD GIFTS!

Thanks to all of the participating PASA members who are offering selected gift items with a percentage of sales to benefit PASA in December:

And don’t forget your PASA related gifts – buy a gift membership, honor someone special by making a memorial or honorary donation, shop the Buy Fresh Buy Local® marketplace & more ideas on our *GOOD GIFTS

Annie’s Heirloom Seeds of Michigan’s Annual Charity Seed Giveaway

(From Ingrid Fowles)

Annie’s Heirloom Seeds E-Newsletter – December 2012 Edition:

“…All of our old seeds go to charities or other organizations that can put them to good use.  If you are part of a charity or know of a charity that could use some seeds, please reply to this newsletter and tell us about your charity.  Charities with a mission of feeding the hungry, especially teaching the hungry to grow their own food, will be given priority.  It doesn’t matter if your charity is a registered non-profit, or even if it is a formal organization.  Anyone that can put our seeds to good use is welcome.  We will send seeds out on a first-come first-serve basis until they are gone….”

Winter Farmers Market Reminders

The Boalsburg Winter Farmers Market is open Tuesdays at the Boalsburg Fire Hall from 2 p.m. to 6 p.m. except the next two weeks, when it’s open MONDAYS  from 11:00 AM to 2:00 PM on December 24 and December 31

Products available: geese, turkeys, Christmas appetizers, sides, and desserts, breads, raw milk cheeses, goat milk ice cream, raspberry desert chèvre, and their regular raw goat milk cheeses, apples, pasture-raised beef, wild-caught Alaska salmon products, wines,  a variety of green and root vegetables

The State College Winter Farmers Market is open Fridays at the Borough Building (243 South Allen St.) from 11:30 a.m. to 5 p.m

Products include bison, grass-fed beef, pork, goat, lamb, veal, poultry, rabbit meat, wild Alaska salmon, local trout, milk, cheese, yogurt, eggs, vegetables, such as winter squash, spinach and other greens, garlic, root veggies, onions and salad mix, BBQ sauce, hot sauce and other gourmet sauces, soaps, lotions, shampoos, and candles, canned goods, potato chips, and lots of amazing baked goodies, flowers, potted plants, and hypertufa planters, dried and fresh herbs, honey, maple syrup and apples.

Local Sources for Sausage Casings

(From Josh Lambert)

For homesteaders interested in making sausage at home:

  • Penns Valley Meat Market in Millheim  (Tel: 349-5355)
  • Mark’s Custom Meats in Lamar (Tel: 383-4520).
  • Call ahead to make sure they have them in stock.

News from Clearwater Conservancy

(From Jennifer Shuey of Clearwater Conservancy)

  • Clearwater Conservancy E-Newsletter – December 16, 2012 Edition
  • Clearwater Conservancy E-Newsletter – December 18, 2012 Edition, announcing 2013 For the Love of Art & Chocolate Fundraiser: Friday, February 15, 2013 at the Penn Stater.

News from Envinity

  • Envinity E-Newsletter – December 11, 2012 Edition, including information about rebates for energy audits and a local homeowner working toward a net-zero energy home.

January 3 – Social Media Boot Camp in Gettysburg

“…Social media have become an exciting way to enhance your farm business’s marketing activities, allowing you, the owner, or manager, to connect directly with your audience.  While a social media presence is almost expected of many businesses, many owners struggle with how to use the various tools to connect.

Whether you direct market your farm products and want to quickly and efficiently communicate with your customers or you just want to share your farm’s story with your neighbors and community, social media can serve as a powerful tool.  During this 2-day boot camp, we’ll discuss the basics of several tools such as Twitter and Facebook and get you thinking about their strategic use…”

Upcoming Events at the FoodShed Community Kitchen at Village Acres Farm in Mifflintown

January 5 – First Saturday Farmer’s Market and Brunch, 8am – 11am. Come by for delicous breakfast/brunch, take a stroll around the farm, and stock up on fall vegetables!

January 5 – Live Music in the FoodShed: The Heggs. 6-10pm: a local bluesy, folksy band (staring our own Will Markely, part time farmer, full time musician) will be performing. Join us for a fun evening of great music and delicious food! BYOB. Cafe open at 6, Music starts around 7.  Live music events at the FoodShed are sponsered in part by the  Juniata Cultural Arts Committee

January 12 – 13 – Squash Hunger! with the Greenhouse. 10 a.m. Saturday  to 3 p.m. Sunday – You are invited to Squash Hunger! Farmers from around Pennsylvania are setting aside their excess produce to be transformed into a delicious and nutritious soup for those in need.

Please join us in sorting, preparing and freezing a bounty of squash soup. The soup will be donated to the St. Francis of Assisi Parish Soup Kitchen for distribution directly to the those in need in the Allison Hill neighborhood of Harrisburg. Three volunteer shifts available each day. Check the webpage for details & contact info.

January 28 & 31 – Food Safety Workshops at Mid-Atlantic Fruit & Veggie Convention in Hershey

A link to the convention schedule.

Jan. 28 – “Writing a Food Safety Plan” Workshop.  Cost: $30. PRE-REGISTRATION REQUIRED. Topics covered include: Produce Food Safety, Water, Animals and Manure, Health and Hygiene, Harvest and Post Harvest, Traceability and recall

Jan. 31 – “Food Safety” Workshop covers  Update from PA Department of Agriculture and Surviving a Third Party Audit.

February 6  – New & Beginning Farmer Pre-Conference Track at Farming for the Future in State College

(From Patty Neiner of PA-Women’s Agricultural Network)

This year PA-WAgN has partnered with PASA to present a Pre-Conference Track for New & Beginning Farmers, to be held at the Snider Agricultural Arena. Topics being covered are fencing, irrigation design, machinery selection, the business side of sustainability, and fostering positive farm relationships. We will also discuss the events revolving around our PA-WAgN  mentoring program. This is Track 1 on the schedule and we hope to see many of you there. We hope this will be a highly informative mix of hands-on and classroom-style teaching. Please visit the conference website for all the details. Early bird registration deadline is December 31, 2012.

February 17 – Stopping the Keystone XL Pipeline – Rally in Washington DC

(From Ed Perry of National Wildlife Federation)

“Many of you have asked me:  What can we do on climate change to make a difference???

On February 17, we’re going to be part of a huge rally in DC to protest the Keystone XL pipeline, that is proposed to deliver some of the dirtiest oil on the planet to refineries in Texas.  According to NASA scientist Dr. JIm Hansen, it’s game over for the climate if we begin using that dirty oil.  But this rally is not just about the pipeline.  It’s about our government’s continued focus on fossil fuels to the detriment of the renewable energy industry and the future of the planet.

We need to let the Obama administration know that we aren’t going to let the fossil fuel industry dictate our future any more, so we need thousands of us to descend on DC to let the president know we want him to stand for us and future generations and stop this pipeline.

I’ll be reserving a bus, or even better, buses, to take us into DC.  And I’ll be planning on making stops in Harrisburg and York to pick up people along the way. This will be the biggest climate action event ever held in the USA.  It will put this president and this Congress on notice we want action on tackling global warming.  Now.  How many more Katrina and Sandy type disasters do we have to experience before our elected representatives finally get it? We have no time to lose.

Please let me know if you’re willing to come with me to DC.  The cost for the bus will likely be somewhere around $25/person. I’ll keep you posted as I get more information. Please disseminate this to your list of people who are also concerned about this issue.  It will be great if we have buses converging on DC from all over Pennsylvania.”

March 11 – 12 – Women’s Farm & Forestry Alliance Annual Meeting in St. Paul Minnesota

“This two day event will feature dynamic speakers from women leaders in agriculture, a sampling of our leadership and financial management training, general sessions on communication and social media; as well as the opportunity for attendees to network and provide input and design guidance on the curriculum modules.”

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