NCAT Southwest Regional Office

  The Dirt E-Newsletter See past issues of our newsletter, The Dirt. It showcases the Southwest Regional Office’s efforts, programs and services. Browse them to see the important sustainable agriculture and energy work we are doing in San Antonio Texas. Check out our DIRT e-news archives Opened in 2010, NCAT’s Southwest Regional Office is located… Continue Reading

Catching Rainwater with Cows, Soil Microbes, and Electric Fencing

Catching Rainwater with Cows, Soil Microbes, and Electric Fencing

Excerpt taken from The Dirt Southwest Newsletter Now in its second year, NCAT’s Soil for Water initiative has already taught over 150 people, mostly landowners, how to build healthy soils that catch and hold more rainwater. In the late spring and summer our research team, led by students and faculty from Texas State University, set… Continue Reading

New NCAT Report: Who Are the Organic Farmers of Texas?

New NCAT Report: Who Are the Organic Farmers of Texas?

NCAT has released a new report, Who Are the Organic Farmers of Texas? The report reviews all USDA data, including newly available reports and tools, to arrive at an accurate picture of the number, location, and types of organic farms in Texas. Although Texas is a national leader in organic cotton, rice, and peanut production,… Continue Reading

Feasibility Study for a Texas Organic Food Hub is out!

After a year of research, NCAT staff members Robert Maggiani and Mike Morris have completed their long-awaited Feasibility Study for a Texas Organic Food Hub, as well as an accompanying Food Hub Planning Workbook that can be used by food hub planners and organizers to forecast the financial performance of an existing or hypothetical food… Continue Reading

Texas Veterans Attend Armed to Farm Training

From April 13-17, NCAT hosted 25 Texas veterans for an Armed to Farm training in Castroville, Texas, 30 miles west of San Antonio. The training included classroom presentations, farm tours, and hands-on activities. A grant from the veterans’ organization Swords to Plowshares  helped cover the training costs, as did funds from the USDA Rural Development… Continue Reading

January 29 Drought Summit in San Antonio

All Texans who care about the survival of the state’s small farms and ranches are urged to attend the January 29 Texas Drought Summit at the Hilton San Antonio Airport Hotel in San Antonio. The summit will take stock of damage done to date by the Texas drought, provide a forum for sharing lessons learned,… Continue Reading

Texas Drought Summit Scholarships Available

Scholarships are available for Texas farmers and ranchers who would like to attend a January summit to learn how to make their operations more resilient. The “Texas Drought Summit” is being sponsored on January 29 by Farm Aid in conjunction with the annual Texas Organic Farmers and Gardeners Association (TOFGA) Conference in San Antonio. Farm… Continue Reading

Terra Preta Farm

Juan Raygoza earned his M.S. degree in Soil Science from Texas A&M-Kingsville. In addition to farming in Edinburg, he works for the University of Texas-Pan American. In 2013 he was awarded a Young Farmer Grant from the Texas Department of Agriculture. He also spoke at the annual meeting of USDA’s Beginning Farmer & Rancher Development… Continue Reading

Organic Consultant Leslie McKinnon

Leslie McKinnon Leslie McKinnon obtained her education and research experience in soil microbiology, entomology, and biological control from Texas A & M University. Her experience led to a career with the Texas Department of Agriculture (TDA) as Coordinator of the Organic Certification Program. After leaving that position, Leslie has been self-employed as a consultant, helping… Continue Reading