Timely Agriculture Issues/ Grain Marketing Meeting: Tuesday, Sept. 6th at 7:30 AM at the Queen Anne’s County Extension Office, 505 Railroad Ave., Centreville, MD. 1. Speakers: Chris Johnson and Brady Hanson, Perdue Agribusiness. Topic: Growing grapeseed and marketing potential. 2. Speaker: Wayne Evans, Poultry Litter Services, LLC. Farmers Looking for Chicken Manure? Mr. Evans has trucks and contracts with poultry growers and is looking for farmers in our area that want litter for their crops.

Cover Crop Management Workshop

Come Register for the Cover Crop Management Workshop!

Taking place at Chesapeake College: 1000 College Circle, Wye Mills, MD 21679 in Room HPAC 127 on August 30th, 2016 from 6-8 PM.

Phone: (410) 778 –1661

It’s all about Conservation Innovation! Getting the most from your cover crops!


6:00 –6:30 PM –Registration and heavy hors d’oeuvres

6:30 PM –Welcome

Nate Richards, Kent County Agricultural Educator, University of Maryland Extension

6:45 PM –Impact of a cover crop on water available to a corn crop

Dr. Steven B. Mirsky

7:15 PM –Cover Crop’s effect on nitrogen program in corn

Dr. Steven B. Mirsky

7:45 PM –Management strategies of cover crops: late kill vs. early kill

NevinS. Dawson, Sustainable Agriculture Coordinator, University of Maryland Extension

8:00 PM –Evaluations and closing

Upcoming Agriculture Events

LEAD Maryland:
Image of Agriculture Symposium

Join LEAD Maryland Class IX for the third biennial Image of Agriculture Symposium: The Many Faces of Maryland Agriculture on Saturday, November 19, 2016 at the College Park Marriott Hotel & Conference Center in College Park, MD.
The Conference will include a focus on four tracks, including politics of agriculture and the environment, trends in agricultural production, emerging markets and career opportunities, and Maryland’s agricultural communities.
Keynote speakers will include Troy and Sarah Hadrick, founders of Advocates for Agriculture, who have traveled the world helping people involved in agriculture find their voice and story.
For more information please visit: http://bit.ly/1pOLbB5

FREE Agriculture Webinars

MidAtlantic Women In Agriculture is offering free webinars on the 2nd and 4th Wednesdays of each month to share knowledge and resources for those with a passion for agriculture.Webinar topics include marketing, farm diversification, food safety and liability, and much more.

All are invited to participate. See a full list here.

Value Added Producer Grant Program

USDA is soliciting applications to make up to $44 million available to farmers, ranchers and businesses to develop new bio-based products and expand markets through the Value-Added Producer Grant Program. Value-Added Producer Grants may be used to develop new products and create additional uses for existing ones. Priority for these grants is given to veterans, members of socially disadvantaged groups, beginning farmers and ranchers, and operators of small- and medium-sized family farms and ranches. Additional priority is given to applicants who seek funding for projects that will create or increase marketing opportunities for these types of operators. More information on how to apply is on page 20607 of the April 8 Federal Register. The deadline to submit paper applications is July 1, 2016. Electronic applications submitted through grants.gov are due June 24, 2016. Additional information and assistance is available through the USDA Rural Development Office serving your county.

Value-Added Producer Grants Now Available

Apply by July 1, 2016

The Value-Added Producer Grant Program (VAPG) helps agricultural producers enter into value-added activities related to the processing and/or marketing of bio-based, value-added products. Generating new products, creating and expanding marketing opportunities, and increasing producer income are the goals of this program.

Grant funds can be used by agricultural producers to cover costs related to planning activities or working capital expenses necessary for processing and marketing value-added products.

Learn how to apply and get more information.


Questions? Contact Business and Cooperative Programs at 302.857.3628.


Upcoming Grant Information Sessions

Preparing Value-Added Producer Grant Applications – April 28, 2016 from 1pm-2:30pm (EST)
This online session will provide a program overview followed by an in-depth discussion on preparing grant applications. Join us online at: https://usdard.adobeconnect.com/lnichols/ Connect to audio at: 1.888.844.9904; Access Code is 4537780.

Value-Added Producer Grant Open Houses – May 10 & 17, 2016 from 9am-3:30pm (EST)
Meet one-on-one with a USDA Rural Development specialist to discuss potential grant proposals and ask questions. Advance appointment scheduling is necessary. Appointments will be available at USDA Rural Development offices in both Dover, DE and Hagerstown, MD. Please call Business & Cooperative Programs at 302.857.3628 to schedule an open house appointment.

Workshop Series Offered in QAC for Entrepreneurs & Small Business Owners

Queen Anne’s County Department of Economic Development is pleased and proud to be hosting a series of workshops presented by Chapter 670 of SCORE. Existing and prospective business owners are invited to attend one or more of these workshops to learn the importance of a business plan in securing financing and how to construct one; reaching customers through social media; and managing finances with Quickbooks. Experts from SCORE Chapter 670 will be instructing these sessions which will be held from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. at the Chesapeake Heritage and Visitor Center, 425 Piney Narrows Road, Chester, MD 21619. Below is a list of the sessions offered:

April 6, 2016 – Using Social Media in Small Business. Learn from the specialist how to market your business for free while cultivating a loyal customer base using social media.

May 4, 2016 – Mastering QuickBooks. Learn how to streamline your bookkeeping, revenue, expenses, billing, receipts and taxes using QuickBooks.

There is a cost of $10 per workshop or $25 for all three workshops to cover materials. Seating is limited so please register today by calling Linda Friday at the Chamber of Commerce at 410-604-8530 (or via email at linda@qacchamber.com. The workshops are sponsored by the Queen Anne’s County Chamber of Commerce and the Department of Economic Development.

USDA Provides Nearly $80,000 for Maryland Farm Bill Surveys

The Maryland Department of Agriculture will receive nearly $80,000 in funding from the U.S. Department of Agriculture via the 2014 Farm Bill. These funds will support three projects:  a Phytophthora ramorum survey, the development of an early detection system for exotic honey bee pests, and a grape commodity survey. “This funding gives us the ability to further our efforts in preventing the introduction and spread of plant pests, diseases and pathogens,” said Assistant Secretary for Plant Industries Carol Holko. “These projects address commodities that are integral parts of Maryland agriculture, and will help protect the industry and the consumer.”

The supported projects are listed below:

  • Grape Commodity Survey ($24,986): Many Maryland wineries buy grapes from other states for their wine production. Moving grapes (fruits and vines), both into and out of our state, makes it easier for an invasive pest to be introduced or established in Maryland. Surveys of these vineyards are important in keeping the industry safe from these harmful pests.
  • P. ramorum Survey ($35,000): The nursery industry is the second largest agricultural commodity in Maryland. Based on a crop cash value of more than $400 million, it is the number one cash crop in the state. The large nursery industry in the United States allows for the free flow of most nursery stock, increasing the possibility of establishing P. ramorum, a pathogen that causes sudden oak death, a disease. Because many large nurseries receive plants from areas known to have P. ramorum, a survey to test these highly susceptible stocks is crucial in marketing Maryland plant stock as free from P. ramorum.
  • Development of an Early Detection System for Exotic Honey Bee Pests ($20,000): To protect honey bees from exotic pests, the department will set 8-10 traps to collect data on exotic/invasive honey bee pests. Many of these traps will be concentrated along the Chesapeake Bay, a pathway that carries large amounts of international cargo.  Much of this cargo originates in countries that are known to have the invasive pests targeted by this survey. There will be more information on this project later this spring.