Category Archives: NCAT Gulf States Office

Soil Health and Adaptive Grazing with Dr. Allen Williams

Soil Health and Adaptive Grazing with Dr. Allen Williams

Adaptive grazing is a regenerative livestock production system that uses multiple paddocks, frequent moving of livestock with short grazing intervals, and long rest periods to provide full pasture plant recovery. It is a proven method of increasing the resiliency of pastures by building soil organic matter, increasing soil water infiltration, promoting water conservation, adding diversity, and decreasing surface runoff.

Dr. Allen Williams travels all over the world to teach about adaptive grazing. A former professor at Mississippi State University, he came to the realization that conventional methods of production were not working for many of the farmers he was trying to help. Farmers were having to use more and more inputs to get the same productivity and were having a difficult time staying profitable. This caused him to rethink his approach. He transformed his own ranch in Starkville, Mississippi, using adaptive grazing and, ultimately, he decided to leave academia to become a full-time rancher and consultant. He has been teaching other producers how to implement adaptive grazing on their land ever since.

In this video series, filmed at an in-person workshop at The Piney Woods School, Dr. Williams discusses and demonstrates the principles and benefits of adaptive grazing.

This video series was produced by the National Center for Appropriate Technology through the ATTRA Sustainable Agriculture program, under a cooperative agreement with USDA Rural Development. This video series also was supported a grant from the USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service as part of The Piney Woods School Sustainable Farming Outreach Project. The workshop was hosted in partnership with the Piney Woods School in Piney Woods, Mississippi. ATTRA.NCAT.ORG.

Series of Virtual Sustainable Agriculture Workshops Now Online

Series of Virtual Sustainable Agriculture Workshops Now Online

Our NCAT Gulf States team has been working hard throughout the pandemic to provide quality technical assistance to farmers that we’re known for. Instead of meeting with farmers in-person, we shifted to virtual events. In-person on-farm workshops will always be our favorite way to teach, but we found that there are benefits to embracing the… Continue Reading

Welcome, Asha!

Welcome, Asha!

NCAT is excited to welcome Asha Tillman to the Gulf States Regional team! Asha has been working with Rock, Liz, and Felicia in our Jackson, Mississippi, office since February 2019 as an intern, and we are so pleased that she will be able to continue as a sustainable agriculture specialist. Asha grew up in Jackson,… Continue Reading

Gulf States 2019 Review

Gulf States 2019 Review

As 2019 fades into the horizon, we at the NCAT Gulf States Regional office have been reflecting on moments from the past year that stand out to us as particularly meaningful. Our work this year has included a wide variety of efforts, from building more equitable food systems within Mississippi communities, to risk management education… Continue Reading

Learn Grazing with Dr. Allen Williams

Learn Grazing with Dr. Allen Williams

NCAT is excited to be hosting a one-day workshop at The Piney Woods School Farm in Piney Woods, Mississippi, with world-renowned rancher and grazing educator Dr. Allen Williams. Join NCAT agriculture specialists and Dr. Williams on October 29, 2019, from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. for this rare opportunity. Dr. Williams travels all over the… Continue Reading

Apply Now: Mississippi Food Systems Fellowship

Apply Now: Mississippi Food Systems Fellowship

Attention Mississippians! NCAT and its Mississippi Food Justice Collaborative partners are excited to announce the launch of the first-ever Mississippi Food Systems Fellowship! In order for all Mississippians to have access to healthy local food, we believe that the food system needs transformational change. The Mississippi Food Systems Fellowship will invest in Mississippians working to… Continue Reading

NCAT Participates in Alcorn State University Small Farmers’ Conference

NCAT Participates in Alcorn State University Small Farmers’ Conference

The NCAT Gulf States staff were pleased to participate in the 2019 Alcorn State University Small Farmer’s Conference. Sponsors, vendors, organization representatives, farmers, and members of other diverse groups traveled from all over Mississippi to attend the three-day event held at the Tunica Arena and Expo Center in Tunica, Mississippi, April 1 to 3. Each… Continue Reading

Livestock Workshop at Reyer Farms a Success

Livestock Workshop at Reyer Farms a Success

This blog post was written by NCAT Intern Asha Tillman Five days before spring, a combination of aspiring farmers and established farmers participated in a livestock workshop held on Reyer Farms of Lena, MS. NCAT Gulf States Regional Director Rock Woods and farm owner Jody Reyer led the workshop in partnership with Alcorn State University’s… Continue Reading

NCAT Hosting Listening Sessions with Mississippi Farmers

NCAT Hosting Listening Sessions with Mississippi Farmers

As agriculture specialists, we tend to spend a lot of our time at the front of the room teaching at workshops or conferences but this winter we’ve had a chance to listen and take notes ourselves. In January, NCAT Gulf States staff Rockiell Woods, Felicia Bell, Liz Broussard, and Sam Humphrey organized the first two… Continue Reading

NCAT Partnering With Foot Print Farms for Upcoming Workshop

NCAT Partnering With Foot Print Farms for Upcoming Workshop

Local farms play a critical role in increasing healthy food access for urban and rural communities alike.  An upcoming workshop in Jackson, MS, will be highlighting opportunities in urban farming, backyard production, and marketing direct to consumers and restaurants, as well as other related topics.  The National Center for Appropriate Technology (NCAT), with the support… Continue Reading

Fall on the Demonstration Farm: Season of Transition

Fall on the Demonstration Farm: Season of Transition

Farm Manager Sam Humphrey has been transitioning from summer crops to fall crops for weeks now.  It is a slow process as summer crops gradually taper off.  Meanwhile the fall crops that thrive in cooler weather make the journey from seed to transplant to field. Sam has pulled out the tomatoes that he painstakingly grew… Continue Reading

‘Grant Writing for Farmers’ Workshop Proves Popular

‘Grant Writing for Farmers’ Workshop Proves Popular

Producers can add value to raw agricultural products in a multitude of ways such as drying or canning, but often this requires an upfront investment in materials, processing equipment, or marketing that can be difficult to fund. This is where a USDA Value-Added Producer Grant (VAPG) can help, but the application process can be daunting. … Continue Reading

First Workshop in Series a Success

First Workshop in Series a Success

Back in the heat of August, around 30 farmers convened at the 34th Street Wholistic Garden & Education Center in Gulfport, MS, for a hands-on workshop titled “Growing in the City.”  Gulf States Regional Director Rock Woods and Agriculture Specialist Felicia Bell joined with 34th Street’s Executive Director, Mr. James Franklin, to lead this one-day workshop,… Continue Reading

NCAT Hosting Small Farm Equipment Workshop in Mississippi

NCAT Hosting Small Farm Equipment Workshop in Mississippi

Farms come in all types and sizes, from hundreds of acres to tens of square feet.  Knowing what tools are the best fit for your purpose, scale of operation, and budget can be hard.  An upcoming workshop in Mound Bayou, MS, will be focused on how to select the right equipment for a wide range… Continue Reading

Mississippi Food Systems Leaders Convene for Training

Mississippi Food Systems Leaders Convene for Training

The National Center for Appropriate Technology’s Mississippi Food Justice Collaborative – which includes Mileston Cooperative, Choctaw Fresh Produce, Mississippi Farm to School Network, FoodCorps, and the Steps Coalition – hosted a two-day gathering of current and emerging leaders who are passionate about further building equitable Mississippi food systems. On June 27-28, a cohort of 36… Continue Reading

Spring at the Mississippi NCAT Demonstration Farm

Spring at the Mississippi NCAT Demonstration Farm

Spring is well underway at the Mississippi NCAT Demonstration Farm!  New to our operation this year is a Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) program. This is basically a subscription program: Customers sign up for  a weekly veggie box delivery, lasting 12-weeks. Sam Humphrey, farm manager, has delivered this to customers for four weeks so far, and… Continue Reading

FoodCorps Mississippi Participates in National Day of Service

FoodCorps Mississippi Participates in National Day of Service

FoodCorps Mississippi service members participated in National Day of Service events across Mississippi on Martin Luther King Jr. Day, and at one service site, 34th Street Wholistic Gardens and Education Center, over fifty volunteers rallied to make major headway on increasing available growing space. There were raised garden beds to be filled and a hoop… Continue Reading

Mississippi NCAT Demonstration Farm Hosts Successful Alliance Field Day

Mississippi NCAT Demonstration Farm Hosts Successful Alliance Field Day

NCAT was excited to partner with the Alliance of Sustainable Farms to host a workshop at our demonstration farm at The Piney Woods School (PWS) on Friday, December 15.  Approximately 35 farmers attended this one-day workshop to learn about small farm equipment, cover crops, hoop house production, and farm to school programs. Sam Humphrey, NCAT’s demonstration… Continue Reading

Cooking Class with MS Food Justice Collaborative Partners

Cooking Class with MS Food Justice Collaborative Partners

Gulf States Agriculture Specialist Felicia Bell stepped out of the field and into the kitchen on August 12 to teach a class on healthy cooking. Her students were farmers from the Mileston Cooperative as well as local families, who joined Felicia to learn some cooking techniques to prepare fresh, simple, healthy meals. This event, arranged… Continue Reading

Ultra-Local Food for The Piney Woods School

Ultra-Local Food for The Piney Woods School

NCAT’s Gulf States demonstration farm has been producing a bumper crop of different varieties of peppers this summer, and on September 7, the students of The Piney Woods School got to enjoy some for lunch in their cafeteria. This all came together because of the work of FoodCorps alumna, Sara Hazelnis, who has been hired as… Continue Reading

Farm Intern Lashayda Sandifer’s NCAT Experience

Farm Intern Lashayda Sandifer’s NCAT Experience

The NCAT Gulf States team has been working hard to establish the demonstration farm this year, so we added another member to our team for the season.  NCAT intern Lashayda Sandifer, senior at Tougaloo College in Jackson, MS, has been helping farm manager Sam Humphrey keep up with the many summer tasks that need to… Continue Reading

Summer on the Mississippi Demo Farm

Summer on the Mississippi Demo Farm

After a busy spring of preparations, demonstration farm manager Sam Humphrey got to enjoy the satisfaction of a harvest this week.  He picked the first of his crop of banana peppers and says they tasted delicious!  He is closely watching the tomatoes as they set fruit and the other varieties of peppers he planted, anticipating… Continue Reading

Farmers Learn Finances

Farmers Learn Finances

Regional Director Rockiell Woods is finishing up a series of workshops for Mississippi farmers and ranchers this month, teaching producers about financial opportunities that they might have been unaware of, or that might have seemed unattainable. The USDA’s Farm Service Agency (FSA) offers financial assistance to farmers nationwide, but many farmers are either unaware of… Continue Reading

The Dirt
Gulf States

The DirtGulf States

Good News from NCAT’s Gulf States Region! We were given a truck! A huge thank you to Patty Peck Honda for donating a truck to be used at the demonstration farm! Their generosity will help our team get things rolling on the farm this spring! NCAT Demonstration Farm Anticipation, hope, and determination are in the… Continue Reading

The Dirt
Gulf States

The DirtGulf States

Gulf States Activities Mississippi Food Justice Collaborative: Establishing Partnership Fourteen people representing the six groups that form the Mississippi Food Justice Collaborative gathered for their first in-person meeting in Jackson on December 13. The groups that make up the Collaborative include the National Center for Appropriate Technology (NCAT), Asian Americans for Change, FoodCorps, Mileston Cooperative… Continue Reading

Mississippi Food Justice Collaborative: Establishing Partnership

Mississippi Food Justice Collaborative: Establishing Partnership

Fourteen people representing the six groups that form the Mississippi Food Justice Collaborative gathered for their first in-person meeting in Jackson, Mississippi on December 13, 2016.  The groups that make up the Collaborative include the National Center for Appropriate Technology (NCAT), Asian Americans for Change, FoodCorps, Mileston Cooperative Association, Mississippi Farm to School Network, and… Continue Reading

Meet New Farm Manager, Sam Humphrey!

Meet New Farm Manager, Sam Humphrey!

This spring, we’ll be getting our hands dirty as we start the first growing season at the Gulf States Region Demonstration Farm, and NCAT welcomes Sam Humphrey, who has been hired to manage this new project. A native of Jackson, Mississippi, much of Sam’s childhood was spent playing in the outdoors (i.e., following the great… Continue Reading

Welcome, Liz!

Liz Broussard has joined NCAT’s Gulf States Regional Office as the Food Justice Coordinator.  Liz is a new NCAT staff member, but a familiar face in NCAT’s Jackson office.  She served as a FoodCorps member in Connecticut for one year before becoming the FoodCorps Fellow in Jackson for two years.  Welcome back to Liz! Originally… Continue Reading

Inspiring Future STEM Leaders

Inspiring Future STEM Leaders

Gulf States Regional Office Director Rockiell Woods spent the day with elementary school students at the 4-H National Youth Science Day on October 5th at Southern University in Baton Rouge, Louisiana.  The theme this year was “Drone Discovery” Engineering Design Challenge.  This annual event is designed to “spark an early youth interest and leadership” in topics… Continue Reading

“Down-to-Earth” Workshop Held for Sheep and Goat Producers

“I belong to the Mississippi Goat Association and I go to a lot of these things, too, but this is the most down-to-earth, informative workshop that I have ever seen.” That was the response of one farmer who attended the Risk Management for Small Ruminant Operations workshop, hosted by NCAT’s Gulf States Regional Office in… Continue Reading

Talking Whole-Farm Risk Management

Talking Whole-Farm Risk Management

NCAT’s Gulf States Regional Office Director Rock Woods and Sustainable Agriculture Specialist Felicia Bell have had the opportunity to discuss an important but often overlooked aspect of agriculture with farmers throughout the south this spring and summer: risk management. While not as flashy a topic as the latest and greatest seed variety or tractor model,… Continue Reading

Gulf States Office is Growing!

NCAT’s Gulf States office welcomes a new member to the team! Nina Prater joined NCAT on May 16th, 2016, and will be assisting the Gulf States team from her location in Fayetteville, AR. Nina has a background in soil science, and has experience helping farmers meet their conservation goals as a former employee of her… Continue Reading

“Sound and Sensible Organic Certification in the Gulf States”

THINKING ABOUT ORGANICS? “Sound and Sensible Organic Certification in the Gulf States” Workshop Series Will Be Offered by NCAT and QCS Regulations 9am-4pm with lunch provided 5/5 Atlanta, GA 5/28 Gulfport, MS Mock Inspections/Organic System Plans 9am-1pm with light refreshments 4/28 Homestead, FL (See flyer in Spanish) 5/7 Commerce, GA 4/30 Tallahassee, FL 5/12 Huntsville,… Continue Reading

Second Round of Organic Workshops Scheduled

NCAT’s Gulf States office, in partnership with Quality Certification Services (QCS) of Gainesville, Florida, is continuing a series of workshops about “sound and sensible” organic certification for producers in the Gulf States region. These workshops are intended to enlist new farmers and ranchers interested in the National Organic Program (NOP) and help them learn how… Continue Reading

Sound and Sensible Organics Workshop Series

NCAT’s Gulf States office, in partnership with Quality Certification Services (QCS) of Gainesville, Florida, is offering a series of workshops about organic certification for producers in the Gulf States region. These workshops are intended to enlist new farmers and ranchers in Mississippi, Louisiana, Alabama, Florida, and Georgia interested in the National Organic Program (NOP) and… Continue Reading

‘Sound and Sensible’ Organic Certification

NCAT’s Gulf States office, in partnership with Quality Certification Services (QCS) of Gainesville, Florida, is offering a series of workshops about organic certification for producers in the Gulf States region. These workshops are intended to enlist new farmers and ranchers in Mississippi, Louisiana, Alabama, Florida, and Georgia interested in the National Organic Program (NOP) and… Continue Reading

Get all ‘The Dirt’ with Gulf States News

  The NCAT Gulf States Regional Office has been busy, busy, busy this spring — performing outreach to individuals and groups in the region, working on teaching basics of sustainable agriculture, and reaching out to new audiences. And now, it has published its June issue of ‘The Dirt’ detailing its activities. Get “The Dirt” on… Continue Reading

NCAT Gulf States Rocks at Meridian Block Party

The NCAT Gulf States Office “got down” at a giant block party in Meridian, MS, earlier this month, part of an environmental, art and local food extravaganza. Specifically, NCAT offered information and expertise at a booth in Meridian, MS, as part of Gaining Ground Sustainability Institute of Mississippi’s (GGSIM) 5th Annual Conference, titled “Growing Health, Sustaining Wellness.”… Continue Reading

Florida Cover Crops Tour Teaches Lessons

  The NCAT Gulf States Office was represented at a recent farm tour highlighting cover crops and conservation tillage in Florida. Titled Discover the Cover: Cover Crop & Soil Health Field Tour, the day-long instructional tour around Monticello, Fla., on April 1 was sponsored by Farm Credit of North Florida and the Jefferson County Soil… Continue Reading

Bell Teaches ABCs of Organic Gardening

NCAT Sustainable Ag Specialist Felicia Bell taught the ABC’s of organic farming at a presentation before an enthusiastic crowd at the Alcorn State University Small Farmers Conference in Jackson, MS, recently. Titled “The ABC’s of Organic Gardening,” Bell spoke Tuesday, March 25, before more than 50 people at the Vegetable Production and Marketing segment at… Continue Reading

Natural Beekeeping, Permaculture Edible Forests at UWA Talk

NCAT Outreach Coordinator Jim Ewing is the featured speaker for two free talks April 16 at the University of West Alabama at Livingston, Ala., as part of UWA’s 10 a.m. to noon Edible Landscape Seminar. Natural Beekeeping: An Introduction will be held at 10 a.m. followed at 11 a.m. by Edible Forests on a Permaculture… Continue Reading

Gulf States NCAT Hosts Free Garden Seminar, Field Day

A free seminar on Planting and Planning Your Garden is offered March 12 by the National Center for Appropriate Technology Gulf States office in Jackson, Miss. The event kicks off the Empowering Farmers Series for 2014. The talk will be followed by a field day on March 15 at Tougaloo-Rainbow Gardens located on the Tougaloo… Continue Reading

NCAT Board Enjoys MS Farm Tour

  The NCAT Gulf States Office was pleased recently to host the NCAT board of directors meeting, celebrating the opening of its office and taking the directors on a tour of sustainable farms in Mississippi. Due to time constraints, the itinerary was limited to three farms which demonstrate a commitment to sustainable agricultural practices: —… Continue Reading

NCAT Office Helps Women in Agriculture

  Members of the NCAT Gulf States office partnered recently with the National Women in Agriculture Coastal Region to host a free beginning farmer workshop. NCAT Agriculture Program Specialist Felicia Bell gave a talk on obtaining government assistance for new, women, minority and historically underserved farmers, and Outreach Coordinator Jim Ewing spoke on turning gardens… Continue Reading

NCAT Office Greets Alabama Farmers

  Members of the NCAT Gulf States office enjoyed handing out publications and mixing with farmers at the recent Alabama Fruit & Vegetable Growers Association Conference held at Auburn University. A highlight was the demonstration farm where Auburn is testing varieties of bananas that can be grown in the United States coastal region. The field… Continue Reading

NCAT Office Touts ‘Saving Rural America’

  NCAT Gulf States Ag Specialist Felicia Bell was a featured participant in a recent Saving Rural America conference in Paulding, MS, after a successful presentation at a previous conference aimed at informing local youth about opportunities in agriculture. Titled “Strengthening Rural Communities Through Partnerships,” the Feb. 8 Saving Rural America Conference was held by… Continue Reading

Beginning Farmer Workshop Set for Leakesville, MS

The National Center for Appropriate Technology Gulf States office is partnering with the National Women in Agriculture Coastal Region to host a free beginning farmer workshop 11 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. in Greene County, MS, Saturday, Feb. 15. To be held at McIntosh Homes, 1320 MS Highway 63N, Leakesville, MS, the workshop will include such… Continue Reading

NCAT Plays Role At SSAWG

  The NCAT Gulf States office enjoyed networking and providing sustainable agriculture information and expertise at the Southern Sustainable Agriculture Working Group (SSAWG) Conference in Mobile, Ala., recently. SSAWG is the premier event for sustainable agriculture in the Southeast region. Last year, about 1,500 people attended; this year, about 1,100 attended the sessions held Jan.… Continue Reading

NCAT Gulf States Makes Splash in Savannah

  The NCAT Gulf States Office made a splash in the old seaport city of Savannah, Ga., recently at the Southeast Regional Fruit & Vegetable Growers Conference. The conference, held January 9-11 at the Savannah Convention Center, is a huge event, drawing fruit and vegetable growers from across the Southeast. Last year, more than 2,900… Continue Reading

Woods Speaks at Delta Farm Credit Meeting

Gulf States Regional Director Rockiell Woods was a speaker at the recent winter meeting of the Shreveport Credit Union in Clarksdale, MS. Woods was asked to speak about the Gulf States office and its outreach to support limited resource farmers in the region. Woods was involved in assisting creation of the Farmers Market in Marks,… Continue Reading

Bell Gives Risk Managment Talk at LSU

  NCAT Gulf States Agriculture Program Specialist Felicia Bell was an invited speaker at a recent conference of the Louisiana Fruit and Vegetable Growers Association at the Louisiana State University (LSU) AgCenter in Baton Rouge. Her topic, Legal Risk Management – Protecting Your Farm and Your Safety, was also recently presented at the NCAT office… Continue Reading

NCAT Office Informs at F2C Conference

  The NCAT Gulf States office had a big presence at the recent Farm to Cafeteria Conference in Pearl, MS. Regional Director Rockiell Woods and Agriculture Specialist Felicia Bell attended workshops and networking sessions between manning the information booth with Outreach Coordinator Jim Ewing at the Mississippi Food Policy Council’s December 3 meeting. The one-day… Continue Reading

NCAT Offers Free Whole Farm Planning Workshop

A free seminar on Whole Farm Planning is being offered Dec. 18 by the National Center for Appropriate Technology Gulf States office in Jackson, Miss. Topics include personal and business goals, planning for profits, assessing land, resources and enterprises, estate planning, and other issues. Part of the Empowering Small Farmers Series, the seminar begins at… Continue Reading

NCAT’s Bell to Speak at Louisiana Growers Conference

National Center for Appropriate Technology (NCAT) Gulf States Agriculture Specialist Felicia Bell will speak Wednesday, Dec. 4, at the Louisiana State University Ag Center/Louisiana Fruit and Vegetable Growers Association Winter Meeting and Field Day. Her topic, Legal Risk Management – Protecting Your Farm and Your Safety, was recently presented at the NCAT office in Jackson,… Continue Reading

NCAT Office Offers Fruit, Vegetable Expertise

  Members of the NCAT Gulf States office were featured speakers at the Mississippi Fruit & Vegetable Growers annual conference in Choctaw, MS, recently. Gulf States Regional Director Rockiell Woods was part of a roundtable discussion on resources available for fruit and vegetable growers during the main event at the concluding session on Friday, Nov.… Continue Reading

Gulf States Office Celebrates Farm-to-School Food

  Members of the NCAT Gulf States office were honored guests recently  for a celebration of food and those who provide it in the Mississippi Delta region. Gulf States Regional Director Rockiell Woods and Agriculture Specialist Felicia Bell shared in the celebration at the 3rd Annual Harvest Celebration and Awards Gala in Clarksdale, MS, Oct.… Continue Reading

NCAT Attends Co-op Conference

  Members of the NCAT Gulf States office attended the Mississippi Tri-County Agricultural Co-operative’s 2nd annual conference recently. NCAT Regional Director Rockiell Woods provided sustainable agriculture information and expertise at the daylong event. The conference included three tracks of educational presentations, as well as an area farm tour. Formed in 2009, the 45-member co-op is… Continue Reading

Natural Beekeeping, Risk Management Seminars in November

  Two free seminars are being offered Nov. 20 by the National Center for Appropriate Technology Gulf States office in Jackson, Miss.: —  2:30 p.m. to 3:30 Natural Beekeeping by NCAT  Outreach Coordinator Jim Ewing. Explains chemical-free beekeeping for hobbyists, gardeners and small scale farmers. — 3:45 p.m. to 5 p.m. Legal Risk Management: Protecting… Continue Reading

Gulf States Staff Gives Beginning Farmer Talk at LSU

  Members of the NCAT Gulf States office were in Baton Rouge recently to network and provide expertise with beginning farmers at the LSU AgCenter. Outreach Coordinator Jim Ewing was invited to speak on How to Market Your Crop and gave an hourlong talk and PowerPoint demonstration. The 26-page ATTRA publication “Marketing Tip Sheets” was… Continue Reading

Gulf States Office Tours Sustainable Farms in Alabama

  Members of the NCAT Gulf States Office toured sustainable farms in Alabama recently, in order to show how sustainable farm practices can be implemented on a small scale. Hosting the tour was Edwin Marty, director of E.A.T. South of Montgomery, Ala. Marty showed Mississippi FoodCorps members and staff from the Mississippi Roadmap to Health… Continue Reading

Food Policy Councils Discuss Ag Issues

  Members of the NCAT Gulf States Region office recently attended a food policy council meeting in Mississippi, where representatives from diverse food and farming interests met to discuss priorities. Food policy councils are springing up across the nation — and the Gulf States — as a means for farmers, ranchers, and policymakers who work… Continue Reading

Urban Farming Initiative Gains Strength

  NCAT Gulf States Regional Office Agriculture Specialist Felicia Bell attended a recent meeting convened by Jackson (MS) Mayor Chokwe Lumumba to discuss his urban farming initiative. Part of his Jackson Plan that Lumumba used to win election to the mayor’s post June 2, 2013, the plan would support building a network of local urban… Continue Reading

Gulf States Director Lends Farming Expertise

  Rockiell Woods, regional director of NCAT’s Gulf states office, offered farming expertise to a group of farmers attending a recent Mississippi Association of Cooperatives Regional Field Day. Held Sept. 28 at the South Rankin County Farmers Association, Woods spoke on issues of interest to both beginning and advanced farmers, along with an overview of… Continue Reading

U.S. Ag Secretary Meets Mississippi Farmers

  Members of the NCAT Gulf States Region office were invited guests at the meeting with farmers held by U.S. Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack at the Mississippi Agricultural and Forestry Museum in Jackson on Sept. 26. Among the topics Vilsack addressed were the need for funding for small farmers and agricultural research, the congressional stalemate… Continue Reading

Whale of a Time at MUFC Conference

  Members of the NCAT Gulf States Office have been attending the Mississippi Urban Forest Council (MUFC) conference in Jackson this week – and having a whale of a time. Held at the Mississippi Museum of Natural Science at LeFleurs Bluff State Park, the conference has visitors pass a giant whale fossil in the lobby… Continue Reading

Gulf States Staff Strut Stuff at Holmes Field Day

  Staff members of the NCAT Gulf States Office were in full attendance at the monthly Holmes County (MS) Alliance for Sustainable Production Field Day on Sept. 20. Featured presenter was Dr. Bill Evans, an assistant research professor at the Mississippi State University Truck Crop Experiment Station at Crystal Springs, who gave a demonstration on… Continue Reading

Gulf States Office Collaborates with FoodCorps Members

  The NCAT Gulf States Office has been meeting with Food Corps members in Mississippi and are developing plans for joint projects. The Gulf States Office operates out of the Mississippi Roadmap to Health Equity building in the old New Deal Grocery on the Jackson Medical Mall campus. Roadmap sponsors the FoodCorps members here and… Continue Reading

Gulf States Office Hosts Clay County Field Day

  The NCAT Gulf States Office and Gaining Ground – Sustainability Institute of Mississippi (GGSIM) sponsored a farm field day to draw attention to a combined cattle/poultry/swine operation for its sustainable practices. About 70 people attended — lots of them young moms and dads with small children who are interested in buying locally grown food.… Continue Reading

Alabama Group Offering Farm Forums

  The Alabama Sustainable Agriculture Network (ASAN) has started a series of forums across the state seeking input from local people about their interests and concerns. The NCAT Gulf States Office was honored to be asked to attend the meetings. The Food & Farm Forum in Thomaston, Ala., Sept. 12 was an interesting experience, unlike… Continue Reading

Gulf States Office Attends Grazing Conference

  Members of the NCAT Gulf States Office attended the 1st Mississippi Grazing Lands Conservation Initiative Conference Sept. 9-10 in Natchez, Miss. The two-day event at the Natchez Convention Center was put on by the South Area Grazing Lands Conservation Initiative Committee with the intention that the conference will be an annual event. In addition… Continue Reading

Gulf States Office Issues September Newsletter – ‘The Dirt’

  The NCAT Gulf States Office has produced its first newsletter – the September issue of The Dirt. The inaugural issue contains brief articles about the regional office: who staffs it, where they have been, and issues that may be of interest to readers in the region. The Gulf States Office covers Mississippi, Louisiana, Alabama,… Continue Reading

Empowering Small Farmers Workshops

  NCAT Agriculture Specialist Felicia Bell is teaching a series of workshops titled Empowering Small Farmers at the NCAT Gulf States Regional Office in Jackson, MS. Upcoming Workshops include: Oct. 16 – Resource Evaluation & Financials Nov. 20 – Risk Management Dec. 18 – Whole Farm Planning Each workshop begins at 4 p.m. and is… Continue Reading

Gulf States Office Workshops in August

The Gulf States office has been busy, busy, busy! But, as they say on the popular cable TV show, Duck Dynasty, folks have been happy, happy, happy with our workshops! During August, the office gave talks and workshops in George and Greene Counties in Mississippi, and at Mobile, Ala. Featured were trainings aimed at Beginning… Continue Reading

NCAT Gulf States office and NBA superstar Al Jefferson

Members of the NCAT Gulf States office were guests at a reception for NBA superstar Al Jefferson Thursday, July 25, at the Mississippi Roadmap to Health Equity Inc. offices in Jackson, MS. Shown foreground (from left): Outreach Coordinator Jim Ewing; Health Equity Chair and NCAT Board Member Beneta Burt (who hosted the event); Regional Director… Continue Reading

Estate Planning for Farmers

The Gulf States Office of the National Center for Appropriate Technology hosted a workshop on estate planning for farmers at its offices at the Roadmap for Health Equity building in Jackson, MS, at the Jackson Medical Mall on Tuesday, July 16. Presented by the Jackson State University Farmers’ Network, the seminar was titled “How to… Continue Reading

“What is Sustainable Agriculture? And Why!”

Jim Ewing, NCAT Outreach Coordinator, Gulf States Region, gave the keynote talk July 15 for a speakers series at Mississippi State University in Starkville, MS, on “What is Sustainable Agriculture? And Why!” It was the first in a series of lectures sponsored by the Mississippi Sustainable Agriculture Network. (Photo by Daniel Doyle, MSAN state coordinator.) Continue Reading

Alliance for Sustainable Agricultural Production Demonstration Farm Field Day

Jim Ewing, NCAT Outreach Coordinator, Gulf States Region,(seated, left) gave a talk at the Holmes County (Miss.) Alliance for Sustainable Agricultural Production Demonstration Farm Field Day on July 19. Shown (right) Nicole Bell of Alcorn State University, and (standing) Byron Williams of Mississippi State University. (Photo by Judy Belue, project coordinator, Delta Fresh Foods) Williams… Continue Reading

Farmers Market ribbon cutting in Marks, MS

Farmers Market ribbon cutting in Marks, MS

Rockiell Woods, NCAT Gulf States Regional Director (center left in brown shirt), at Farmers Market ribbon cutting in Marks, MS, June 9, 2013. Shreveport Federal Credit Union provided funds for the market which features produce of longtime local grower Frank Wilburn (center), who practices sustainable farming methods. Wilburn has sold produce in the community for… Continue Reading