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"The history of every Nation is eventually written in the way in which it cares for its soil."
- Franklin D Roosevelt. Signing the Soil Conservation and Domestic Allotment Act.

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MOF&G Cover Fall 2011

 


  You are here:  PublicationsMaine Organic Farmer & GardenerFall 2011MOFGA Notes – Fall 2011   
 MOFGA Notes – Fall 2011 Minimize

Dave Colson
Dave Colson
Gianna Short
Gianna Short
John Chartier
John Chartier
Jake Galle
Jake Galle

New Employees at MOFGA
Congratulations
Condolences

New Employees at MOFGA

Dave Colson, who has volunteered for MOFGA in numerous ways since 1985 when his family’s New Leaf Farm in Durham first became certified, is now MOFGA’s agricultural services director. Colson has led MOFGA’s agricultural services program, served for 18 years on MOFGA’s board, including terms as board president and vice president, and has been on our finance, apprenticeship, certification and agricultural services committees. He has provided years of service as a traffic and parking volunteer at the Common Ground Country Fair. New Leaf Farm, a celebrated source of organic produce and herbs in the greater Portland area, has hosted dozens of farm apprentices, many now on their own organic farms in Maine. As a MOFGA staff member, Colson is scaling back farm production while leading an evolving agricultural services staff, and sharing his wealth of knowledge gained through decades of organic farming in Maine. Contact Colson at dcolson@mofga.org.

Gianna Short of Lincolnville has been working as the Common Ground Country Fair assistant this summer. Originally from Oklahoma, Short graduated from the University of Kansas in Lawrence and is now in a master’s program in food and resource economics at the University of British Columbia in Vancouver. Short previously coordinated concerts, a fashion show and a CSA in New York City. Contact Short at fairassistant@mofga.org.

John Chartier is MOFGA’s agricultural specialist for Aroostook County. Chartier grew up on a mixed crop and livestock farm in Kansas “knowing what it is like to go to bed with the satisfaction of being completely spent doing something I love, and to know that after a little rest I will be excited to do it again the next day.” Chartier ran Farm Camp in the Catskills of New York, including overseeing a 2-acre organic garden; a kitchen using mostly on-site grown meats and veggies; numerous farm animals; and a large staff. John and his wife, Amy, worked on Goranson Farm in Dresden in 2006. In addition to providing farming and gardening information in The County, Chartier is developing a farm near Patten. Contact Chartier jchartier@mofga.org.

Jake Galle is an inspector and materials reviewer for MOFGA Certification Services LLC. Galle grew up on a sheep farm in Bowdoinham, earned a B.A. in art history from Plymouth State University and an MFA in video, performance and installation from Vermont College of Fine Arts. After several artist residencies and stints on farms, including working in the vegetable garden and on the grounds of Thomas Jefferson’s Monticello, Galle returned to his family’s Apple Creek Farm in Bowdoinham to work with his father raising sheep, beef cows and chickens. Contact Galle at jgalle@mofga.org.

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Congratulations

Congratulations to Beth Haines and Dennis Fisher of the MOFGA certified Fisher Farm in Winterport on the birth of their daughter, Jane Elizabeth, in July.

Travis Collins, alternative education teacher at Mount View High School in Thorndike and a MOFGA volunteer who developed a tree care plan for our grounds, was recognized by the Maine Department of Education in June for contributing to meeting the needs of children and youth at risk in their schools and/or communities. Collins has created a positive, authentic learning environment for the most at-risk student population. In his program, students built a greenhouse and have raised and sold seedlings, demonstrating entrepreneurship and construction skills. Collins received the department’s “At Risk Educator of the Year” award.

Greg Marley received the Jane Grigson Prize from the International Association of Culinary Professionals for his book Chanterelle Dreams, Amanita Nightmares; The Love, Lore and Mystique of Mushrooms. Grigson was a British cookbook author. The prize in her name is for a book with distinguished scholarship in the quality of its research and presentation. Marley will be selling and signing books at his booth in the Maine Business Area at the Common Ground Fair.

Marada and Leah Cook of Crown O’ Maine Organic Cooperative are starting a company in Van Buren called Northern Girl  to process Maine-raised organic potatoes, root vegetables (including baby carrots) and broccoli for distribution to restaurants and stores in New England.

Whitefield farmers Taryn Hammer and Ben Marcus have opened Sheepscot General at 98 Townhouse Road in Whitefield, a general store where they sell their own farm goods and those of other local growers and entrepreneurs, as well as homesteading supplies. The facility will also be available for community events and will have a café and commercial kitchen.

In May, MOFGA life member Grace Goldberg opened Savory Maine Dining & Provisions at 11 Water Street in Damariscotta. The retail space features local food products and environmentally friendly gifts, a couple of tables for casual dining, and takeout orders. The upper level dining room is open for breakfast, lunch and dinner. Savory Maine will source at least 90 percent of its ingredients from Maine and essentially all will be organically grown, wild harvested or grass fed.

John Howe of Howe Engineering Co. in Waterford, Maine, a MOFGA member and former keynote speaker at the Common Ground Fair, is marketing his mini-thresher/winnower that can thresh up to 20 pounds of clean grain or beans per hour. He sells the unit without the standard 120 volt electric motor that drives it, and notes that it can run on solar power. Customers can buy a completed unit or a kit including the essential parts, finding local fabricators for the sheet metal parts. See www.solarcarandtractor.com.

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Condolences to the Friends and Families of …

Frank Slegona, who died at age 92 on March 3, 2011. Frank and Cyrene Slegona had a large garden and fruit trees at their farm in Lincolnville and were active MOFGA members and supporters. They baked bread, canned applesauce, brewed beer and wine and told great stories.

Paula Roberts, a long-time MOFGA member, former board member (when MOFGA found and established its permanent home in Unity), volunteer and livestock farmer, died at home on May 29, 2011, at the age of 58, from cancer. A skilled shepherd, Paula operated Meadowsweet Farm with her husband, Sumner. Together they were early practitioners of intensive grazing. Paula had a wide circle of friends at the Belfast and Orono Farmers' Markets, where she sold grass-fed lamb and beef. She helped create the Maine Grassfarmers Network, and she was a long-time participant in the Fleece Tent at the Common Ground Fair.  

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