Maine Organic Farmers and Gardeners Association


Leafy green neighborhoods tied to better heart health

December 28, 2018 – Lisa Rapaport, Reuters – People who live in neighborhoods with more green spaces may have less stress, healthier blood vessels and a lower risk of heart attacks and strokes than residents of communities without many outdoor recreation areas, a small study suggests.


Giving Voice: On food access and the farm bill

December 28, 2018 – By Mary Sasso, The Times Record – On Dec. 20, President Trump signed the Agriculture Improvement Act of 2018, also known as the farm bill, into law. Since 1933, different iterations of the farm bill have largely influenced the state of food accessibility in this country, and this time is no different.


Will Mushrooms Be Magic for Threatened Bees?

December 28, 2018 - By Paul Stamets, The New York Times – We might be able to save honeybees from viruses transmitted by invasive parasites without [synthetic] chemical treatment.


National Organic Program; Amendments to the National List of Allowed and Prohibited Substances (Crops, Livestock and Handling)

December 27, 2018 – Federal Register – This rule changes the use restrictions for seventeen substances allowed for organic production or handling on the National List. This rule also adds sixteen new substances on the National List to be allowed in organic production or handling. In addition, this final rule lists the botanical pesticide, rotenone, as a prohibited substance in organic crop production. This final rule removes ivermectin as an allowed parasiticide for use in organic livestock production and amends our regulations to allow the use of parasiticides in fiber bearing animals. Finally, this rule inserts corrections of instructions and regulation text as listed in the proposed rule.


Agriculture Secretary Narrows Sites for Office Moves that Democrats Oppos

December 26, 2018 – By Charles S. Clark, Government Executive – Proceeding apace with his controversial plan to move two research offices out of Washington, D.C., Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue on Dec. 21 announced the criteria that will be used to narrow the 136 bids from state, local, academic and industry stakeholders to host the offices.


There's A Lot At Stake In The Weekly U.S. Drought Map

December 26, 2018 – By Grace Hood, Maine Public – Crippling drought this year has caused more than $1 billion in damage. As it has played out, anyone affected by the drought or trying to manage it has turned to a once obscure map that has become key to understanding what's happening: the U.S. Drought Monitor.


The Maine Winemakers Utilizing Hybrid Grapes

December 26, 2018 – By Erinne Magee, Wine Enthusiast – It's tough to grow grapes in unpredictable weather, but winemakers in Maine tackle the cold climate with hybrid grapes, co-ferments and gumption.


Maine Farmland Trust offers art, writing residencies at Jefferson center

December 26, 2018 – Penobscot Bay Pilot – Applications for the 2019 residencies at Maine Farmland Trust’s (MFT) Joseph A. Fiore Art Center opened in early December and will close March 1. This summer the Center will offer six visual art residencies: four for Maine artists, one of which is reserved for a Native American artist; one for an out-of-state artist, and one for an international artist. In addition, the Center will offer one performance/interdisciplinary arts residency and one literary arts residency for Maine applicants, as well as a new academic writing residency open to applicants from New England.