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Farmers from across NYS fill Jordan Hall for a 2015 NYCO Winter Meeting.
Photo: A. Fay Benson, Cornell Cooperative Extension

New York Certified Organic (NYCO), a group of grain and dairy farmers meeting together since 1994 to increase their practical knowledge and expertise with the organic production of crops and milk, has announced its Winter 2016 programs. Each program begins at 10 AM in Jordan Hall at 630 West North Street at the New York State Agricultural Experimental Station in Geneva, NY. There is no cost or need to register to attend the meetings; participants are asked to bring a dish to pass at the potluck lunch.

The 2016 NYCO Winter Meetings are as follows:
January 12: Three Sessions on Organic Crop Management Through Good Years and Bad
Sessions will cover What to Do When the Cultivating Window Does Not Open Very Wide, The Effects of Long-Term Management on Weed Competition in Organic Soybean, and Using Crimped Cover Crops for Soybean or Squash Production.

February 9: Four Sessions on Managing Soil Health with Crop Rotations and Forage Production
Sessions will cover Putting Soil Health Knowledge and Crop Rotations into Practice, Alternative Forage Rotations to Protect the Soil on Marginal Land, and Reducing Pasture Compaction with Daikon Radish. A farmer panel will discuss How to Decide Whether to Sell Forages to Dairy Farmers or Plow Them In for Green Manure.

March 8: Four Sessions on Changing Markets for Organic Grain and Dairy
Sessions will cover Developing New Markets for Organic Grain, What is Transpiring in the World Market of Organic Grain, What Do You Want to Make Per Acre on Your Farm, and Flax Grain Production and Uses.

The New York Crop Insurance Education Team, and Cornell Cooperative Extension provide support for these meetings. Speakers include farmers from across New York State, Cornell University and Extension researchers, and crop and dairy consultants. There will be a brief description of how crop insurance can benefit organic farmers at each of the 2016 meetings.

The popularity of the NYCO winter meetings has grown from a gathering of six organic grain producers in the Martens Farms’ farmhouse kitchen in Penn Yan to the Jordan Hall auditorium with more than 150 farmers attending meetings in 2015.

For more information, contact Fay Benson at 607.745.3807, afb3@cornell.edu.

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