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Add Your Market to the 2011 USDA National Farmer’s Market Directory Today!

Recently, Velma Lakins, our dedicated Manager for the USDA Farmers Market, joined thousands of other farmers markets around the country in updating her market listing for the 2011 National USDA Farmers Market Directory.  “It was so easy!” she said.  “In less than 10 minutes I was able to update our listing so that USDA employees, neighbors, and visitors can know when and where our market is open, and have it counted among the nation’s 6,100 plus farmers markets.  ”

Even though the USDA Farmers Market has been listed in previous USDA Farmers Market Directories, Velma needed to update her listing this year to take advantage of some of the Farmers Market Directory’s new fields.  For the first time, the USDA Farmers Market Directory will allow Market Managers, such as Velma, to indicate multiple locations for their markets.  In Velma’s case, the USDA Farmers Market actually has two locations during the year – in the parking lot at 12th and Independence Aves NW, just steps away from the Smithsonian metro stop, operating between June – November, and inside the USDA’s South Building, at wing three, operating from December – May.  In addition to updating her locations, Velma was also able to specifically note that the USDA Farmers Market operates on government property (as opposed to a street, a church, a park or a school) and has extended its market season through May. Read more »

NFL Quarterback Sam Bradford, Secretary Vilsack Urge Native Children to Get Outside and Get Active

Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack (at podium) and St. Louis Rams Quarterback Sam Bradford (blue shirt, left) met at the U.S. Department of Agriculture in Washington, DC, on Wednesday, April 27, 2011, to encourage Native American Youth to pursue a healthy  lifestyle. More than 30 Students from Eastern and Western Tribes, Southeast Alaska, and Tuba City, Arizona came to the Nation’s Capitol to plant vegetable seeds that are indigenous to North America.  Bradford is a citizen of the Cherokee Nation.  The garden is called The Roots of American Agriculture, and is part of the Headquarters’ People’s Garden. Also speaking at the event was the Executive Director of First Lady Michelle Obama’s Let’s Move! Campaign Robin Schepper (center); Director of the Bureau of Indian Education. USDA Photo by Lance Cheung.

Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack (at podium) and St. Louis Rams Quarterback Sam Bradford (blue shirt, left) met at the U.S. Department of Agriculture in Washington, DC, on Wednesday, April 27, 2011, to encourage Native American Youth to pursue a healthy lifestyle. More than 30 Students from Eastern and Western Tribes, Southeast Alaska, and Tuba City, Arizona came to the Nation’s Capitol to plant vegetable seeds that are indigenous to North America. Bradford is a citizen of the Cherokee Nation. The garden is called The Roots of American Agriculture, and is part of the Headquarters’ People’s Garden. Also speaking at the event was the Executive Director of First Lady Michelle Obama’s Let’s Move! Campaign Robin Schepper (center); Director of the Bureau of Indian Education. USDA Photo by Lance Cheung.

Cross posted from the Let’s Move! blog:

St Louis Rams quarterback Sam Bradford joined Secretary Vilsack in the USDA People’s Garden yesterday to urge Native American youth to spend the summer pursuing healthy outdoor activities.  About 30 Native youth from across the Nation, including Tuba City, Arizona and Southeast Alaska, planted a Native American Garden (part of the USDA People’s Garden) as Bradford, Vilsack and other dignitaries spoke. Read more »

This Local Food is for the Birds

Annual sunflowers are now grown in New Jersey by local farmers to supply NJ Audubon’s annual birdseed sale. Sale proceeds support wildlife conservation education and research.

Annual sunflowers are now grown in New Jersey by local farmers to supply NJ Audubon’s annual birdseed sale. Sale proceeds support wildlife conservation education and research.

With an increased demand for locally grown food, many farmers are finding new markets for their products that are closer to home. But what some New Jersey farmers are doing to expand their market base is strictly for the birds! Read more »

Champions of Change: Chefs Move to Schools

Cross posted from the Let’s Move! blog:

It is an honor to be named a Champion of Change by the White House for my work with school nutrition programs in the Pacific Northwest.  Last Friday I joined a roundtable meeting with Administration officials and five other chefs from around the nation to discuss best practices for working with schools and teachers through the Chefs Move to Schools program.

We have an extraordinary opportunity in this country to influence a lifetime of healthy eating habits beginning with children and teens.  Schools provide a perfect setting, both in the classroom and in the cafeteria.  Chef volunteers with Chefs Move to Schools are ready to share their expertise to get kids excited about tasty, healthy foods. Read more »

US Forest Service Reforestation Efforts a Win-Win for Healthy Forests

Every year across the country, the U.S. Forest Service plants trees on thousands of acres of land. These efforts help to restore valuable ecosystems and helping to combat the effects of climate change.

“Planting trees is a win-win investment,” said Dave Cleaves, Climate Change Advisor for the Forest Service. “Not only do trees store carbon, making them one of our most effective tools for climate change mitigation, they provide many other benefits – from watershed protection, to wildlife habitat, to shading houses and reducing cooling costs.” Read more »

Project Will Help Improve Our Chesapeake Bay

Farm owners Kurt and Frank Dill speaking to Buddy Hance at a Maryland Earth Day event that was held to highlight the completion of the improvements made to the Worton wastewater system.

Farm owners Kurt and Frank Dill speaking to Buddy Hance at a Maryland Earth Day event that was held to highlight the completion of the improvements made to the Worton wastewater system.

A few scattered showers didn’t dampen spirits at a Maryland Earth Day event to highlight the completion of the improved Worton Wastewater Treatment Plant, Tuesday April 19. Read more »