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Press release from first farming conference

Contact:  Tami Schwerin                            FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
The Abundance Foundation
Tel:  919-533-5181   Cell:  919-444-9300

NC FARMERS CONFRONT CLIMATE CHANGE ADAPTATION
Farming Strategies in Today’s Changing Climate Conference

Big, bushy eggplants with no fruit, livestock sold prematurely in the face of drought, and declining pollinator populations are some of the challenges facing North Carolina farmers as they adapt to today’s climate.
Demand for locally produced food has never been stronger, but both conventional and sustainable farmers are forced to change their operations in order to operate in today’s conditions.

In response to farmer requests, The Abundance Foundation, Center for Environmental Farming Systems (CEFS), Central Carolina Community College (CCCC), Carolina Farm Stewardship Association (CFSA), Chatham County Extension, and the NC Strawberry Association are holding a one-day conference, Friday February 8, 2013 on the Pittsboro campus of CCCC. Laura Lengnick, Director of the Sustainable Agriculture Program at Warren Wilson College will be keynote speaker.  Laura recently completed work as a visiting scientist on the USDA National Program Staff, where she researched best practices for adapting US agriculture to climate change.

Farmers will be paired with agricultural scientists to discuss adaptation strategies for farming in our changing climate.  Conference findings and research questions will be published as a guide to identify research needs to address climate change on the farm.  “Climate change is not something that is going to happen,” said Nancy Creamer, director of the Center for Environmental Farm Systems, “it’s something that is affecting farmers right now.”

From annual and perennial fruits and vegetables, to livestock and everywhere in between, growers from around North Carolina are invited to attend this conference, which will identify new research projects, update farmers on current research, and produce a comprehensive summary of findings. One outcome of the conference will be the formation of a task force to address the immediate needs of the farmers when it comes to adapting to climate change.  

The conference will be serving lunch procured from a 50 mile radius provided by CCCC’s prominent Sustainable Agriculture and Natural Chef Culinary programs.  An end of the day conviviality event will be held at the Piedmont Biofuels and Biofarm campus.  The conference will begin at 8:00 am and end at 6:00 pm.

Farmers, agricultural researchers and technical advisors, and sustainable agriculture advocates may register online for the Farming Strategies in Today’s Changing Climate Conference at  HYPERLINK “http://theabundancefoundation.org/events/farming-strategies-in-todays-changing-climate” http://theabundancefoundation.org/events/farming-strategies-in-todays-changing-climate

Tickets to attend are $25 until February 1st, when the ticket price will increase to $35 each.

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