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Small Farm Production, Marketing and Food Safety

May 7, 2015

Texas A & M Agri-Life Extension and Research Station
2401 East Highway 83
Weslaco, Texas 78593
Contact:  Dr. Juan Anciso (956) 968-5581

Pre-register/register online by May 5. Enrollment is limited to the first 100 participants.

  • 8:00   Registration

  • 8:30   Welcome and Introductions – Barbara Storz, Retired Extension horticulturist and John W. Smith, Extension Program Specialist 

  • 8:45    “To Wash or Not – Small Farm Egg Production” – Dr. Craig Coufal - Associate Poultry Department Head for Extension & Extension Program Leader. His research area focus is on egg sanitation, poultry husbandry, and poultry waste management. Dr. Coufal will discuss food safety laws and best practices in relation to egg production and how to minimize losses in small farm egg production.
  • 9:30   SARE Programs – John Smith – Texas SARE Model State Program Assistant.  Since 1988, the Sustainable Agriculture Research and Education (SARE) program has helped advance farming systems that are profitable, environmentally sound and good for communities through a nationwide research and education grants program. John will discuss what opportunities are available for producers.

  • 10:00   Break

  • 10:15   Local Food Production Funding Opportunities - Dr. Nelson Daniels, Program Specialist, Agriculture Natural Resources Cooperative Extension Service Program, Prairie View A&M University. His work focuses on farm financial management and the sustainability of the small family farm.  His program interests are in the areas of sustainable agriculture, agricultural diversification, and leadership development in rural communities.  He enjoys working one-on-one with small scale, beginning and limited resource agricultural producers. 

  • 11:00   Food Safety in the Field  – Dr. Juan Anciso, Extension vegetable specialist for the 21 county area of District 12. His area of research is vegetable pest management, vegetable production and food safety on the farm, known as Good Agricultural Practices (GAPs).  He attends the annual USDA IR-4 Food Use Workshop as the plant pathology representative for Texas and represents Texas on the National Good Agricultural Practices committee and United Fresh’s GAPs Harmonization effort that addresses GAPs food safety in produce. 

  • 12:00   Lunch

  • 12:30    “The 43,560 Plan” – How to make $1.00 per square foot: Clif Slade, a farmer and retired Extension Specialist with Virginia State University will demonstrate how a farmer can gross $43,560 by using just one acre of land. He has established a plan known as the“43,560 Initiative” which allows a farmer to make an average of $1 per square foot using limited resources and organic methods.

  • 2:30    Evaluation

  • 2:40    “43,560 Initiative” Hands on Field Work: Weslaco Campus with Cliff Slade - Come dressed and prepared to spend the afternoon during hands on demonstration work on using farm equipment such as seeders, and tillers, applying soil amendments, making compost tea and constructing drip irrigation systems which are all the elements needed to farm your one acre of land.

Sustainable Organic Gardening and Small Farming Traing Edin d 



Sustainable Agriculture Defined

Sustainable Agriculture is a grassroots movement to revitalize the small family farm. This new breed of farmer works as hard at marketing as he does figuring out what he is going to grow or raise each season. Hes innovative and he is also a social, economic and ecological pioneer. His life is based on doing what he feels is right for his family, his community and the world. Bottom line, what we all do today should not adversely affect tomorrow.

SARE Exposition in San Antonio had 141,296 visitors.

Sustainable Agriculture Research & Education (SARE)

Since 1988, the Sustainable Agriculture Research and Education (SARE) program has helped advance farming systems that are profitable, environmentally sound and good for communities through a nationwide research and education grants program. The program is part of USDA's Cooperative State Research, Education, and Extension Service, is managed in partnership with regional land grant hosts, and funds projects and conducts outreach designed to improve agricultural systems.

To advance such knowledge nationwide, SARE administers a competitive grants program first funded by Congress in 1988. Grants are offered through four regions -- North Central, Northeast, South and West -- under the direction of councils that include farmers and ranchers along with representatives from universities, government, agribusiness and nonprofit organizations.

The diversity in membership of the regional administrative councils reflects SARE's commitment to serve the whole spectrum of the agricultural community. SARE's broad representation remains largely unique in federal grant funding for agriculture.

CONTACT: John W. Smith, SARE Model State Program Assistant.

Texas SARE is a partnership between Texas AgriLife Extension Service and Prairie View A&M University, and is advised by a committee including sustainable agricultural producers.

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