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Posts Tagged ‘PASA’

RR ewe lamb

RR ewe lamb

Mike and I host the Mid Atlantic Hair Sheep sale.  We do this activity on our own- not as a part of an organization- because there are no organizations in the area to do this and we feel there is a need.  It takes a tremendous amount of time and of course it takes a lot of money to do this sort of event.   I could be wrong- but I thought that having an event where hair sheep producers could come get together, talk up their breed, or talk up their farm (to buyers that is)- talk to one another about “sheep issues”- and have a single place where they could increase the genetics in their flock would be a good thing.

The sale was on Saturday.  We offered a consignors dinner Friday night.  The purpose of this is many.  1st- I knew that I would need to be at the barns to check in sheep, and I need to eat dinner- SO- why not bring a grill, chicken, salad, etc. and offer a free meal to the consignors.  That would give everyone a more relaxed opportunity to just talk.  A more social event- no stress.  

This year I had gotten PASA to host a small-ruminant workshop on Friday and Saturday morning.  This would give shepherds an educational opportunity as well.  Come, learn something, talk sheep, buy sheep.  Sounds like fun to me!

I think that shepherds that have less well known breeds should REALLY be the ones attending- and getting others with their breeds to attend!  It is a good place to let potential buyers know you are coming- and while you are there- talk up your sheep!

Although Mike and I host this sale- it is the responsibility of everyone who comes to advertise they will be selling sheep at this sale.  It is the responsibility of all consignors to promote the sale, build desire and competition and attract buyers.  Everyone wants to have the “high selling animal”- but the person who really promotes the sale and gets the buyers to come and bid against eachother for the opportunity to take home your sheep- that shepherd will do the most for the total sale.

We will do it again next year- and hope it dosen’t POUR like it did this year.  Oct. 23, 2010.  Hope to see you there

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Tonight’s CSI Miami focused on corporate agriculture’s stranglehold on the organic and  genetically engineered vegetable markets, and the resulting problems with E.coli from Concentrated Animal Feeding Operations and unintended consequences of genetically engineered foods.  Although fictional and sensationalized, it was well timed with pending federal legislation that impacts all of us that eat vegetables.  80% of the vegetables sold in the grocery store are grown in two agricultural areas in California and Arizona, and are run by a very few foody corporations.  The pending legislation (that is currently soliciting public comment) benefits big corporate agricultural operations at the expense of safe, healthy, sustainable, local growers- who can show you the farm and where you can meet the people that run that farm.  That is the piece of mind that I call Ag Security. 

The Pennsylvania  Association for Sustaniable Agriculture (PASA) is asking their membership to weigh-in on this issue.   Here is a link to a letter to PASA members from the Executive Director, Brian Snyder.   Brian testified on behalf of PASA members at a hearing in Ohio.  Here is one excerpt from his testimony. 

 “The Agricultural Marketing Service (AMS) is intended to serve the marketing needs of the agricultural community in this country.  Their own administration has stated that “AMS is not a food safety agency.” But I submit that, while it might serve the immediate marketing needs of the largest producers (and most vegetables), as the hearing notice makes clear, the current proposal would in fact fail to support the majority of growers who now produce leafy greens on a variety of scales.  Of course, that majority of growers might well become the minority soon enough, because the LGMA will likely force them to comply or step aside altogether.  From a marketing point of view, the last thing most smaller-sized, independent farmers need right now, whether we’re talking about leafy greens, dairy products or any other commodity-specific group, is a government-sponsored, vertically-integrated market syndicate against which they must compete.”

To support local sustainably produced vegetables, please review the draft rule and provide comments at the email address for USDA listed in the link highlighted above.

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