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Archive for category: Press Release

Cultivating Viable Farms and Food Enterprises with The Carrot Project

April 11, 2019

For over ten years, The Carrot Project has worked with start-up farms and food producers throughout New England to help them build the business skills vital to running successful farm enterprises. Our clients are small farmers grossing less than 500K in profits per year, and food and agriculture businesses that source their products locally. We want to see the local food businesses in our community thriving 5, 10, and 50 years from now. That’s why, since our founding, we have supported food entrepreneurs to grow their businesses towards profitability.

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A Message from the Director, March 2019

March 15, 2019

We are grateful for all the hard work from the Ag & Food Committee, M&C Café, the SEMAP board, our volunteers, and especially our presenters for a successful 12th Annual Ag & Food conference.  Thank you!  Nowhere else on the Southcoast can you find that much food and farming knowledge in one location.  The keynote by Dr. Michael Hoffman of the Cornell Institute for Climate Smart Solutions got the day off to a serious start talking about the effect of climate change on our food system by breaking down a typical meal and discussing how each food item would be affected by climate change.  It was a sobering look at what the future holds for agriculture. 

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An Update from the BCC Sustainable Agriculture Program

March 14, 2019

The Sustainable Agriculture Program at Bristol Community College has a new look and a new program coordinator. Professor Kimberly Amaral Newton has taken up the position of program coordinator after the long-time coordinator, Jim Corven, retired last August. Since taking on the program, Prof. Newton has secured a $15,000 grant from the Koppelman family to help refurbish and greatly expand the growing capacity of the college, including constructing a series of modular greenhouses to extend the growing period into the school year. The current heated greenhouse (also a gift from the Koppelman family) will be utilized to capacity to help grow out transplants for the new effort. Students from the sustainable agriculture program will actually construct the modular greenhouses and add to the protected growing capability with each new class.

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A Message from the Director, February 2019

February 3, 2019

Winter is anything but our quiet season here at SEMAP. From our annual appeal in November right through to Farm to Tapas in the summer we have lively time planning and implementing our various initiatives and events.  On Saturday we had a very successful workshop on growing hemp, and just a few short weeks away is the 12th Annual Ag & Food Conference coming up on February 24th, 2019.  We have also been taking some time to look into legislative issues. With the new session just beginning, please reach out to your representatives if you see a bill that you support. If you are not certain who your legislators are, this tool will tell you. With many bills filed on similar subjects, it’s always helpful to name the specific bill number when contacting your legislators. Here is a list of the bills we think you should be aware of:

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Elliot Farm Develops Low-Cost Laser Scarecrow for Bird Damage to Sweet Corn

November 12, 2018

Photo by Andy Reago & Chrissy McClarren, Creative Commons 2.0

November 7, 2018

LAKEVILLE, MASSACHUSETTS — For the past 25 years, family-owned Elliot Farm in Lakeville, MA has provided southeastern Massachusetts with quality, native produce. The 50-acre family farm grows mixed vegetables, beefsteak tomatoes, and specializes in sweet corn. Elliot Farm’s roadside farm stand is open seasonally 7 days a week, and also offers a Community Shared Agriculture (CSA) program.  Founder Kenneth Elliot, 60, has been farming for over 40 years and welcomed his two children into the family business at the ripe ages of 10 and 8, now 34 and 33.  Now, as proud co-owners, the siblings are determined to keep agriculture in their community for generations to come.

Unfortunately, sweet corn crop damage from red-winged blackbirds is threatening the viability of Elliot Farm and hurting other farms across the region. Despite tremendous efforts to keep these pests at bay, including balloons, bird distress calls, bird repellent, reflecting tape, and netting, in 2016 season, Elliot Farm lost 80% of its sweet corn crop during the height of bird season, roughly mid-July through mid-October, estimated at $18,000 in lost product.

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