Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Putting Small Acreage to Work Conference

If you are looking for ways to make a living or supplement your income off of your land, we invite you to attend the Putting Small Acreage to Work Conference on December 4, 2010 at the Gaston County Citizens Resource Center in Dallas, NC from 8:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. Whether for profit or personal enjoyment, a new project should be carefully thought out. This conference will provide information for people interested in starting or expanding small scale farm enterprises. You will be able to explore alternative enterprises by speaking with successful producers, university personnel, and experts in the field who are already growing, producing, and researching various crops, livestock and field techniques to enhance production. They can give you the practical, no-nonsense advice you will need when considering business planning, crop & livestock production, market development, etc. Topics to be discussed include: tree fruit production, use of high tunnels for season extension, grass-based sheep production, small scale rabbit production, successful vegetable gardening from A to Z, small ruminant herd health, small acreage rotational/intensive grazing, mushroom production, selling to restaurants & independent retailers, understanding sales tax issued on agricultural products, and internet & social media for farmers.

The program will include one general opening session and three breakout sessions. Three to four topics will be discussed concurrently during each of these breakout sessions. Participants will receive resource materials for all sessions.

PRE-REGISTRATION IS REQUIRED. Registration forms and fees are due by 12/01/2010 . Checks made out to NC Cooperative Extension – Gaston County. Call Lara Worden at 704-922-2112 for more information.

Monday, October 11, 2010

ISAMPA Fall 2010 Production Workshop

Poultry Incubation: Hatching for Success
Rabbit Production: Best Practices from Kit to Market
2011 WNC Heritage Poultry Project
ISAMPA Annual Membership Meeting

Saturday, November 6, 2010
2pm to 6pm
McDowell Technical Community College

The Independent Small Animal Meat Processors Association (ISAMPA) is pleased to announce the fall 2010 production workshop and annual membership meeting.

On Saturday, November 6, 2010, participants will gather from 2pm to 5pm at McDowell Technical Community College for a series of presentations on various aspects of poultry and rabbit production.

Our featured presenters include South Carolina poultry grower Gra' Moore. Mr. Moore will give a presentation on how to do poultry incubation on your own farm. A major bottleneck in efficient and profitable production can now be overcome following Moore's lessons for on-farm incubation of eggs.

We are very fortunate to have Dr. Anne Fanatico, a nationally-recognized small scale poultry expert, present on the latest trends and research in small-scale meat poultry operations. Anne recently joined the faculty at Appalachian State University and is now a North Carolina resident!

Jim Adkins, also a recently-arrived North Carolina resident, returns to our workshop series to present on an exciting new project to support increased production of standard breed ("heritage") poultry on NC farms.

For rabbit producers, ISAMPA board members Stephen McMurray and Rick Harty will give presentations on best practices for rabbit meat production, including helpful advice on breeding, raising, slaughter, and marketing.

At 5pm, workshop participants are invited to attend a dinner and ISAMPA's annual membership meeting. A catered meal is included with workshop registration. We'll discuss the coming year and latest developments in the small scale meat processing world.

Following the membership meeting and dinner, we'll offer a quick tour of the Foothills Pilot Plant facility, now under construction just a half mile from McDowell Tech.

There's something for everyone at this event, so don't miss out on this chance to learn and network with your fellow small scale poultry and rabbit producers.

Workshop registration cost is free to ISAMPA members and $15 for non-members. Membership renewal will be available at the workshop, with new ISAMPA members receiving free workshop access with their 2011 yearly membership fee ($20).

Please RSVP by Tuesday, November 2 by calling Smithson Mills at 828-273-9119, or by emailing smithson@smithsonmills.com. Please give your name, phone number, and email address when your register.

Directions to McDowell Tech: McDowell Tech's campus is located right off exit 86 at I-40 in Marion, NC. Follow signs for the workshop when you enter campus drive.

This workshop is organized by the Independent Small Animal Meat Processors Association of Western North Carolina (ISAMPA), with generous support from the Z. Smith Reynolds Foundation and McDowell County. ISAMPA's mission includes: Promoting best practices for raising, processing and marketing small meat animals; support for the development of a small animal processing facility meeting state or federal inspection requirements, and; raising public awareness of small animal meat products humanely raised and processed in a manner that contributes to the social, economic, and environmental well being of Western North Carolina's people and natural resources.

ISAMPA Fall Production Workshop Agenda
Saturday, November 6

2pm: Welcome and Introductions

2:15pm: Poultry Incubation: Hatching for Success

3:15pm: Break

3:30pm: Breakout sessions

2011 WNC Heritage Poultry Project and Latest Industry Updates
Jim Adkins and Dr. Anne Fanatico

Rabbit Production: Best Practice from Kit to Market
Stephen McMurray and Rick Harty

4:30pm: Networking and socializing

5pm: Dinner and ISAMPA Membership Meeting

5:45: Site visit: Foothills Pilot Plant

6:00: Conclusion

NCSU Fall/Winter 2010 Horse Owner Educational Sessions

Local horse enthusiasts are invited to participate in a series of monthly educational programs on horse management. The sessions will be held at the Citizens Resource Center in Dallas, North Carolina and are sponsored by the North Carolina Cooperative Extension Service. Each individual program will last approximately 1.5 hours including time for question and answer sessions with presenters. Each session will begin with registration and refreshments at 6:30 p.m and the presentation at 7:00 p.m.

Program dates and topics are listed below:
October 19—Treating Laminitis by Dr. Richard Mansmann
November 16– Preventing and Managing Laminitis

These programs will originate from the Extension Horse Husbandry department at NC State University and local downlinks will be possible through the Elluminate technology. All sessions are open to the public and are free of charge. The Gaston County Horseman’s Association will sponsor the refreshments for the series.

Pre-registration is required!
If we do not meet the required minimum number of registrants (10) by the Monday before the event, the class will be cancelled.
To register, contact Gaston County Cooperative Extension at 704-922-2112.

The Citizens Resource Center is located on Highway 279 just west of Highway 321 and Gaston Community College. For more information contact Lara Worden at (704) 922-2112.