blueberry

Organic Blueberry Production: Challenging but Profitable

Jim Rogers Berries, Organic

By Clint Thompson Organic blueberry production can be a profitable venture for aspiring producers in the Southeast. While market prices are higher than in conventional systems, growers need to be mindful of the various production challenges. These range from weed control options to selecting the right fertilizer. Gerard Krewer, a Professor Emeritus at the University of Georgia, discusses the obstacles …

Small-Scale Production Practices

Jim Rogers Organic, Top Posts

By Ida Vandamme Organic products have become mainstream as more people want to be aware of production practices, ingredients and inputs into their food and household items. Given the current supply-chain issues and labor shortages, many people also are turning to local businesses and even starting businesses of their own. Here are some important considerations when thinking about starting and/or …

Organic Corner: Managing Mites and Thrips in Strawberries

Clint Thompson Florida, Organic, Strawberry, Top Posts

By Sriyanka Lahiri The development of an integrated pest management (IPM) approach for the various arthropod pests of organic strawberries is underway at the University of Florida’s Strawberry and Small Fruit Crops Entomology Lab. The primary arthropod pests needing management include chilli thrips, western flower thrips, two-spotted spider mite and cyclamen mite. Strawberry fruit yield losses due to feeding damage …

USDA Builds Pandemic Support for Certified Organic, Transitioning Operations

Clint Thompson Organic, Top Posts

The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) will provide pandemic assistance to cover certification and education expenses to certified organic agricultural producers or those transitioning to organic. USDA will make $20 million available through the new Organic and Transitional Education and Certification Program (OTECP) as part of USDA’s broader Pandemic Assistance for Producers initiative. It provides new, broader and more equitable opportunities for farmers, ranchers and producers.     OTECP funding …

Increased Interest: Crop Insurance Grows for Specialty, Organic Crops

Clint Thompson Organic, Top Posts

WASHINGTON – The number of specialty and organic agricultural producers who purchase insurance for their crops continues to climb. The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) attributes the recent surge to its work with producers and agricultural groups to create new crop insurance options, expand and improve current options and to support local food efforts. USDA’s Risk Management Agency (RMA) recently released …

Reports: Interest in Crop Insurance Grows for Specialty, Organic Crops

Clint Thompson Organic, Top Posts

WASHINGTON, August 26, 2021 – The number of agricultural producers who purchase crop insurance for their specialty and organic crops continues to climb, which the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) attributes to its work with producers and agricultural groups in recent years to create new crop insurance options, to expand and improve current options and to support local food efforts. …

Pollinator Protection While Using Organic Insecticides

Clint Thompson Alabama, Organic, Top Posts

Organic Corner By Ayanava Majumdar, Dani Carroll and Olivia Fuller As the summer temperatures soar, insect activity in vegetable crops rises dramatically with several overlapping generations of pests feeding on crops. During this time, need-based insecticide applications may be necessary when other pest management measures like trap crops and exclusion systems are exhausted or unfeasible. Tremendous strides have been made …

UGA Trials: Organic Agriculture Research Gaining Traction in Georgia

Clint Thompson Georgia, Organic, Research, Top Posts

University of Georgia Insect Ecology Professor Carmen Blubaugh is researching methods to help organic farmers in the Southeast, according to the University of Georgia Integrated Pest Management Blog. Farmers in the Southeast contend with year-round insect, weed and disease pressure, due to its hot, humid climate. Those challenges are amplified for organic producers, since chemical inputs are limited. Blubaugh and …