Archive for the ‘News’ Category

Conference to Focus on Small Grain Production on March 1, 2013

Wednesday, February 20th, 2013

Commercial production for new small grain markets will be the focus of the annual Maine Grain Conference March 1 in Bangor, sponsored by University of Maine Cooperative Extension. The conference will be held 8:30 a.m.–4:15 p.m., at the Spectacular Events Center, 395 Griffin Road. Speakers from Maine and Canada will discuss producing food-quality grains, with particular attention to crop rotation, fertility and disease; managing problem weeds in organic small grain crops; local markets and informational resources for small grain-producers; and seed laws and the seed certification process. Preregistration is required by Thursday, Feb. 21. Information on registration and conference fees is available on the conference website. To register by phone, or to request disability accommodations, call Meghan Dill, 207.581.3878.

So You Want to Farm in Maine? Free Webinar

Tuesday, February 12th, 2013

small red barnSo You Want to Farm in Maine is a farm business course for people who want to start a profitable farm or expand their farm hobby into a profitable business. This course will be offered in eight (8) evening webinars, from 7:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m., starting Thursday, March 7. Classes will be held on the Internet, live and with an archived version that will be available shortly after the live session.

Topics will include selecting and evaluating a farm enterprise, writing a business plan, record keeping, market research, and much more. The webinar is free. Course texts can be purchased from the UMaine Extension Publications Store.

More information >>

Lichtenwalner Interviewed for Newspaper Farm Blog

Thursday, February 7th, 2013

A Portland Press Herald blog on large animal veterinarians in Maine included a question-and-answer interview with University of Maine Cooperative Extension Veterinarian Anne Lichtenwalner, director of the UMaine Animal Health Laboratory and assistant professor of animal and veterinary sciences, about the dwindling numbers of large animal veterinarians in the state.

4-H Tractor Safety Course at Hammond Tractor in Fairfield

Wednesday, February 6th, 2013

The Kennebec Office of the University of Maine Cooperative Extension, Kennebec County Farm Bureau, and Kramer Tractor will be sponsoring a 4-H Tractor Safety Course beginning April 1, 2013 at Hammond Tractor in Fairfield from 6:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. Class sessions will continue each succeeding Monday on April 8, 15 and 22, followed by a written exam and tractor driving course on April 29th. The participants will learn how to handle tractors and equipment safely, how to identify hazards and how to minimize the chances of accidents.

The course is open to all adults and youth interested, but priority will be given to youth 14 to 16 years of age. This course is required for 14 and 15 year olds who plan to operate farm equipment for hire on farms other than their own. A Federal Certificate of Training will be issued at the end of the course after successful completion of the written test and driving course, and with attendance requirements met. Instructors for this year’s course include Jeff Bragg of Sidney, Neal Caverly of Clinton, Dave Ponsant, Service Manager, Hammond Tractor in Fairfield and Karen Hatch Gagne, Extension Educator, Kennebec County Extension (4-H). Anyone wishing to gain tractor safety knowledge and skills to operate a tractor and implement safety is encouraged to attend.

This course is offered once a year and youth who need a Federal Certificate of Training should plan to attend. There is a registration fee of $20.00 (covers books, snacks, and participant materials). PRE-REGISTRATION IS REQUIRED. For further information or to receive a registration form contact Karen Hatch Gagne, Extension Educator, or Diana Hartley at the Kennebec County Extension Office, Augusta by calling 207-622-7546 or 1-800-287-1481 or by sending an email to: or

If you are a person with a disability and need an accommodation to participate in this program, please call 207-622-7546 or 1-800-287-1481 (or TTY line 1-800-287-8957) to discuss your needs. Receiving requests for accommodations at least 10 days before the program provides a reasonable amount of time to meet the request, however all requests will be considered.

Beginning Farmer Resource Network of Maine

Monday, February 4th, 2013

The Beginning Farmer Resource Network of Maine is a coalition of Maine agriculture agencies and organizations working together to connect aspiring, beginning, and transitioning farmers to resources for farm business success. We hope you find the resources useful and inspiring!

You Can Program Series: Farm Direct Market Ideas & Tips

Friday, February 1st, 2013

DOVER-FOXCROFT: You will learn tips and techniques for getting the word out to potential customers for your agriculture products from Donna Coffin in the next workshop in the YOU CAN series to be held, Wednesday, February 27th from 6:30 pm to 8:30 pm at the University of Maine Cooperative Extension Piscataquis County Office at 165 East Main St., Dover-Foxcroft, ME 04426.

Even though times are tough, YOU CAN sustain your family! The Piscataquis Valley Adult Education Cooperative and the University of Maine Cooperative Extension have put together a series of workshops that will give you the skills to get started in self-sufficiency.

The cost of this workshop is $5 and you can register through PVAEC, 48 Morton Ave., Suite M, Dover-Foxcroft, ME 04426 or call 564-6525 or register online at

Different customers have different preferences for learning about local products. We will discuss the variety of ways you can contact customers including business cards, flyers, community groups, traditional media, Internet, email, Facebook, etc.

Donna Coffin is the University of Maine Cooperative Extension Educator in Piscataquis County for over 30 years. Her area of expertise includes sustainable agriculture and home horticulture. She received her Master of Science degree from the University of Maine in Animal Science in the area of animal nutrition.

For more information or to request a disability accommodation, call 564-3301 or in Maine 1-800-287-1491.

About University of Maine Cooperative Extension:

As a trusted resource for almost 100 years, University of Maine Cooperative Extension has supported UMaine’s land and sea grant public education role by conducting community-driven, research-based programs in every Maine county.

UMaine Extension helps support, sustain and grow the food-based economy. It is the only entity in our state that touches every aspect of the Maine Food System, where policy, research, production, processing, commerce, nutrition, and food security and safety are integral and interrelated. UMaine Extension also conducts the most successful out-of-school youth educational program in Maine through 4-H.

Photo Captures Maine AgrAbility Hearing Checkup

Monday, January 14th, 2013

The Kennebec Journal posted online a photograph of a central Maine woman receiving a free hearing checkup at the Maine Agricultural Trades Show by a technician participating in the University of Maine Cooperative Extension’s Maine AgrAbility program, which assists farmers with chronic health issues and disabilities across the state.


Agriculture Website Reports on UMaine Online New Farmer Resource

Wednesday, January 9th, 2013

The agricultural website The Grower carried a news report on the University of Maine Cooperative Extension’s introduction of a Beginning Farmer Resource Network, a free online resource for new farmers with questions about starting a farming business.

Milk Production Report Cites Cooperative Extension Research

Tuesday, January 8th, 2013

An article in the Bangor Daily News about the rising cost of milk production in Maine cited information from a University of Maine Cooperative Extension report that estimated the average cost to produce 100 pounds of milk is about $30, which is considered high according to Julie-Marie Bickford, executive director of the Maine Dairy Industry, who was interviewed for the report.

Newspaper Reports on UMaine Extension New Farmer Network

Monday, January 7th, 2013

The Bangor Daily News reported on the Maine Beginning Farmer Resource Network being introduced by the University of Maine Cooperative Extension this week at the Maine Agricultural Trade Show in Augusta to provide basic information and support services for beginning farmers in Maine.