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It’s that time of the year again! Many of you are gearing up for the 2015 market season and the Nebraska Farmers’ Market Association wants to remind you to renew your membership. There will be some changes to NFMA leadership this Spring but your benefits will remain the same. We are planning to offer more hands on services and workshops in 2015 and don’t want you to miss out. NFMA is looking forward to building and strengthening Nebraska’s Farmers’ Markets with you this year. Renew or Join Today!
By Shelby Fenster
Created: Sat, 15 Feb 2014 09:04:00 CST
When you think of Nebraska Agriculture, of course beef and corn come to mind. But what about hops, grapes for wine and even citrus fruits?
On Saturday the Nebraska Sustainable Agriculture Society wrapped up their two day Healthy Farms Conference; promoting sustainable and organic local farms and farmers.
And while the sustainable ag industry’s biggest challenge is the same as the rest of the ag industry–
needing young and beginning farmers– they say sustainable and organic farms are thriving in the Cornhusker state.
“Agriculture really is, it’s driven by the need to farm in a way that promotes economically viable farming, ethically and environmentally conscious farming but also perhaps the biggest part of sustainability is being active in the local community, the social responsibility,” said William Powers, Executive Director of the Nebraska Sustainable Agriculture Society.
The Healthy Food Conference’s youth involvement is on the rise. When they first started their youth session, they had 10 kids– this year that number grew to 75.
NFMA members are receiving regular updates of a variety of information important to their market and vendors. Become a member of the Nebraska Farmers Market Association today!!
The Nebraska Department of Agriculture has asked the NFMA to help create awareness of the DriftWatch program. DriftWatch is a system for displaying commercial, pesticide sensitive specialty crop on an online map. Register your fields today at https://ne.driftwatch.org/ or contact the Nebraska Department of Agriculture at 402-471-6883
Public Food Safety Requirements Affect Many Farmer’s Market Vendors
The FDA defines low-acid and acidified low-acid canned foods as products with a high acidity level, or a pH level below 4.6, and a high level of moisture, or a water activity above 0.85. These foods include beans, cucumbers, cabbage, artichokes, cauliflower, peppers, salsas, some sauces, and fish, singly or in any combination. Exempted from FDA regulations are acid foods, repacked acidified foods, fermented foods, carbonated beverages, jams, jellies, preserves and refrigerated foods.
All processors of these types of foods must complete a Better Process Control School training program. These regulations apply to any size processor, including those that sell products through farmers’ markets, on-line and to local stores. Food companies that are uncertain if their products fall into this category can contact the Food Processing Center or their local health inspector.
The Better Process Control School equips attendees with a scientific understanding of thermal processes and strategies of pathogen control, especially clostridium botulinum. By law, each processor of these types of foods must operate with a trained supervisor on hand at all times. The Food Processing Center is certified by the FDA to teach this two-day school.
Upon successful completion of the school, participants become certified and their names are submitted to the FDA. The school is taught by faculty and staff experts from the Food Processing Center. Class size is limited and pre-registration is required.
Due to a lack of participants the First Annual NFMA Annual Meeting scheduled for November 2nd in Kearney has been cancelled. We sincerely apologize for any inconvenience to those of you who were planning on attending. The Nebraska Farmers Market Association DOES plan on having an annual meeting in the future, but the date has not been determined.
Plan to attend the Nebraska Farmers’ Market Associations First Annual Meeting in Kearney NE on November 2nd. The day will be filled with educational seminars and networking. Seminars will include topics such as: winter markets, marketing you market, season extension, food safety and more. This is a great opportunity to network with people from across the state to strengthen our farmers markets and communities.
There will also be Exhibitor Booths to visit throughout the day.
Members $40.00 and Non-Members $55.00, Register by Oct 25th!
Strengthening our markets & communities.
We are pleased to announce that NFMA is now accepting memberships! NFMA is hosting its Annual Meeting in Kearney, NE on Saturday November 2nd. It will be a great time to network with fellow members, recharge for the 2014 season while learning more about how you can enhance your market(s).
We are excited to be building a formal network of markets across the state in order to strengthen Nebraska’s farmers’ markets and communities, join us today!