Fall is in the air! The temperature has started trending downward. As you are winding down preparing for fall, we are gearing up for some exciting events this winter. Keep on reading for more details. You are receiving this newsletter because you have expressed interest in NCAT and the ATTRA program. Thank you for reading!

— Gulf States Regional Office Staff


USDA Farm Service Agency Disaster Designated Counties/Parishes


Whether it was heavy rains or severe drought, the USDA Farm Service Agency (FSA) recently designated numerous counties/parishes in our region as disaster areas, and you might be eligible for emergency assistance. To see if you qualify, visit the FSA Disaster Assistance Program website or call your local FSA office. As of September 30, 2015, Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack has designated a total of 75 primary counties/parishes and 77 contiguous counties/parishes in the Gulf States region disaster areas.


Risk Management Education


Mississippi and Louisiana—we are coming to a town near you! The Risk Management Agency of USDA is funding a Gulf States office project on specialty crop and livestock production. Coming in early 2016 will be multiple two-day workshops focusing on specialty crop and livestock producers in Mississippi and Louisiana. The workshops will focus on two new types of crop insurance products, Whole Farm Revenue Protection and Livestock Risk Protection, as well as production and financial risk management tools and techniques. Please visit our website and be sure to subscribe to our newsletter as information will be posted as it is finalized.


News from Food Corps Mississippi

Welcome Food Corps Fellow Lauren Rhoades

Lauren Rhodes

Lauren Rhoades is our new FoodCorps Mississippi Fellow. Originally from Denver, CO, Lauren studied political science, Spanish, and English at the University of Colorado. She studied abroad in South America and while living in a sustainable cooperative community she rekindled her love for gardening, living intentionally, and preparing locally grown food. Last year, she completed her two-year FoodCorps AmeriCorps service at two elementary schools in Jackson, MS. Lauren helped build school gardens, developed edible-education programs, and established connections with local farmers. As the state fellow, Lauren is ensuring that service members in the state have a meaningful experience while making a positive impact on their communities.


State Orientation September 17-19, 2015

Food Corps

From L to R: Lauren Rhoades, Ellis Cole, Sara Hazelnis, Azania Umoja, Eunha Song , Hannah Stoll , Mary Elizabeth Smithson, Davonte Baker, Felicia Bell, Tylar Setser, Nikki Tate, Ashley Ingram

In September, FoodCorps Mississippi service members finished their state orientation, which was held in Jackson. The 10 first-year service members traveled from their respective sites to the state capital to learn about Mississippi's culture, history, and public health landscape, as well as get hands-on training for maintaining seasonal gardens, facilitating groups, and working in schools. Some of the highlights from orientation included preparing a muscadine taste test for Brown Elementary School students and learning about racial reconciliation with The William Winter Institute.

This year our service members are based in sites across Central and Northeast Mississippi and the Delta. We also welcomed two new service sites: Shape Up Mississippi in Vicksburg and the Sunflower County Freedom Project in Sunflower. These new sites will both be working to incorporate school gardens and local fresh foods into the school communities.

NCAT Gulf States Out and About


  • Catie Young traveled to Jacksonville, FL, on August 15, 2015, to showcase the ATTRA program during the First Coast Specialty Crop Conference sponsored by the Small Farms and Alternative Enterprises team of the University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences.

  • On August 20-21, 2015, the Gulf States team traveled to Mobile, AL, to present at the Agricultural Risk Management and Business Development Workshop sponsored by Alabama A&M University Small Farms Research Center and the Alabama Cooperative Extension System. Felicia Bell presented on small ruminant herd health, Rockiell Woods presented on financial management for new and beginning farmers and ranchers, and Catie spoke on soil management.

  • Grazing Schoo;Felicia and Rock traveled to Carrollton, GA, to attend the University of Georgia Cooperative Extension Service's annual grazing school on September 15-16, 2015. The two-day workshop focused on soil fertility, forage crop establishment, plant growth, animal nutrient requirements, and management of intensive grazing and included both classroom and field work.

Upcoming Events

2015 Fall Flower & Garden Fest
Mississippi State University Extension Service
October 16-17, 9 a.m.-2 p.m.
Truck Crops Experiment Station, Crystal Springs, MS
More info ⇒

October 17-18, 9:30 a.m.-4:30 p.m.
$10 Admission
Fruit and Spice Park, Homestead, FL
More info ⇒

Alabama Fruit and Vegetable Growers Association
November 19-20
Clanton, AL
More info ⇒

Event listings are added regularly to the ATTRA Workshops page at:


ATTRA logo

Newly released ATTRA publications:

If you have questions about sustainable agriculture production or marketing, using renewable energy on your farm, or how to become certified organic, call ATTRA. We're here to help! 1-800-346-9140 or 1-800-411-3222 en Español.

ATTRA is a program of the National Center for Appropriate Technology.

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National FoodCorps Page »
Mississippi FoodCorps Blog »
Mississippi FoodCorps Facebook »


Keep up-to-date on all the news and events from NCAT Southeast by visiting our webpage: /

NCAT logo Contact NCAT's Gulf States Office:
510 George Street, Suite 212
Jackson, MS 39202
(479) 575-1385
(866) 643-2767 Toll Free

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Copyright © October 2015
The National Center for Appropriate Technology

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