sustainable agriculture certification
During this time of year, Rising River Farm’s namesake, the Chehalis River, flows fast and steady, and even though the rainy weather makes it seem that spring is months away, Jennifer Belknap is itching to get outside. Even after 15 years of co-running Rochester, WA-based Rising River Farm with her husband, Jim McGinn, she is still anxious to begin planting the seeds that usher in another season.
Rising River Farm began in 1994 when Jim and two friends started a three-acre community supported agriculture (CSA) farm on land leased from Betsie DeWreede of Independence Valley Farm, located just outside of Rochester, Washington.
San Diego Org Offers Unique Urban Farming Training Program, Preps Students for Careers in Sustainable AgOctober 2, 2012 | Missy Smith
In downtown San Diego, on San Diego City College’s campus, Seeds@City Urban Farm is growing a variety of crops, as well as grooming students for careers in sustainable agriculture. Formed in 2008, the 1-acre urban farm—a cooperative of San Diego City College and San Diego Roots Sustainable Food Project—gives students hands-on training in sustainable urban farming.
“Seeds@City was created to fill a void in southern California for those who want to learn about organic farming in an urban setting,” explains Erin Rempala, associate professor of biology and Seeds@City program manager.
Phil Noble of Hemet, CA-based Sage Mountain Farm never imagined himself living the life of a farmer. Before moving 30 miles outside of the city, Phil was a supervisor for a claims department at an insurance company. His initial foray into agriculture was a small, simple garden. Today, along with his wife Juany, he sustainably farms over 150 acres of land on which he grows certified organic fruits and vegetables and raises grass-fed cattle.
I recently spoke with Phil to learn more about why he decided to become a farmer, what types of sustainable practices he employs, the challenges that he faces and more.
Certification Org. Pushes Consistent Commitment to Sustainability in Agriculture at Every Step of ProductionMarch 22, 2012 | Melinda Clark
With incredibly comprehensive guidelines on environmental stewardship, social responsibility and animal welfare, Portland-based Food Alliance is making it easier to identify producers who demonstrate a true commitment to sustainability.
Food Alliance is a nonprofit that develops stewardship guidelines to help define sustainable agricultural practices and provides third-party certification of sustainable agricultural and food handling practices. It began in 1993 as a joint project of Oregon State University, Washington State University and the Washington State Department of Agriculture to create market incentives for the adoption of sustainable agricultural practices. In 1997, it was incorporated and began creating its first guidelines, initially for fruit and vegetable growers.
News Release - (Portland, OR) – Food Alliance recently published an updated list of food and farm products certified to its Sustainability Standards for Agricultural Production and Food Handling Operations. 46 new farms and food handling operations became certified in 2011, representing a 15% annual increase.
“There are now nearly 100 companies marketing thousands of Food Alliance Certified products throughout the United States and Canada” said Executive Director Scott Exo.