Dec 08

Eat Local First Collaborative Launches Washington Food & Farm Finder

Posted on December 8, 2020 at 10:05 AM by Allan Warren

Local Color Farm  Fiber_Puyallup_Rylea FoehlPierce County Fresh is proud to be a part of the Eat Local First Collaborative, a group of statewide partner organizations working together to build a statewide resource dedicated to connecting consumers and farmers.


Earlier this month, the Collaborative launched the new Washington Food & Farm Finder, a comprehensive and mobile-friendly searchable database connecting Washington State residents with more than 1,700 sustainable and organic farms, farmers markets, and food businesses around the state representing 37 counties.  

Check out a Recent Story on NPR About the Washington Food & Farm Finder Here

Washingtonians are also encouraged to buy directly from local producers for the holiday season. The new website features a Holiday Food & Farm Finder with ideas on holiday meal planning and gift ideas, what’s in season and more. There’s even aMap_Screenshot Holiday Gift Guide featuring farms and local producers with online stores for easy, at-home shopping.


Collaborative members include The Local Food Trust, Pierce County Fresh, Sustainable Connections, Tilth Alliance, Washington State University Food Systems, and Washington State University Regional Small Farms Program with anticipated future participation from partners across the state including Genuine Skagit Valley, Gorge Grown Network, Island Grown in the San Juans, the Methow Conservancy, and Walla Walla Grown.

 

Funding for the Washington Food & Farm Finder was made possible by the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) Agriculture Marketing Service through grant AM170100XXXXG123. Additional support was made possible from The Whatcom Community Foundation and Washington State Department of Agriculture Regional Markets Program.


Dec 07

Conservation Reserve Enhancement Program (CREP)

Posted on December 7, 2020 at 3:26 PM by Allan Warren

Before

Carnation DF 1 - beforeWashington State’s Conservation Reserve Enhancement Program (CREP) is a voluntary program designed to benefit farms and fish by incentivizing streamside habitat restoration. CREP pays farmers and other landowners to grow a different crop in streamside areas of their property – that crop is salmon habitat. This joint program is administered at the federal-level by the USDA Farm Service Agency (FSA), at the state-level by the State Conservation Commission (SCC), and at the local level by conservation districts.

After Planting

Carnation DF 2 - planted

Farmers voluntarily enroll in the program to plant native trees and shrubs to create a “buffer zone” between their crop fields or pasture adjacent to CREP eligible streams. Livestock are excluded from the buffer along the stream and this zone of native vegetation 
keeps the water cool and clean for salmon. The enrollment of the land as a buffer is 
preserved under 10 or 15-year renewable contracts.

Second Fall
Carnation DF 3 - 2nd FallLandowners are assisted by a conservation district CREP technician to design a buffer vegetation plan and get the plants installed. Project costs are paid by the program and farmers receive annual rental payments for the land they enroll. Project oversight and buffer maintenance is provided for 5 years after planting to ensure that the trees and shrubs grow healthy and strong. 
If you have unused land choked with blackberry and bordering a stream, you may be interested in learning how the Washington State CREP could benefit you, your farm, and salmon. It is a win-win situation for Washington farms and fish.  
Ninth Fall
Carnation DF 4 - 9th Fall
Contact Paul Borne at paulb@piercede.org and 253-845-9770 x 105 for more information. 

Are you interested in learning more about CREP and how to enroll? Then join PCD on Monday, December 14th for a webinar from 6:30 – 8:00 PM. Click Here to RSVP.



Dec 07

WELCOME NICOLE! - NEW FARM PLANNER

Posted on December 7, 2020 at 2:41 PM by Allan Warren

Nicole WarrenNicole Warren is the new Puyallup- White River Farm Program Specialist, and will offer technical assistance, farm planning, and educational workshops to assist livestock farm owners in implementing conservation practices that support their farm operations. Nicole graduated from The Evergreen State College with a Bachelor of Agricultural Sciences and spent several years working on pasture-based livestock farms and farmstead creameries in New England and in the Pacific Northwest. Prior to joining PCD, Nicole worked as a farm planner at Thurston Conservation District for 4 years. In her down time, Nicole enjoys backpacking, hiking, hunting, and any adventure she can bring her dog Sorel along.