A webinar to help conventional dairy farmers switch to organic dairy farming is being conducted from 10 to 11:30 a.m. Tuesday May 19.
With the current downturn in milk pricing, demand for organic milk outpacing supply and stable pricing for organically-produced milk, now is the time for conventional dairy farmers to think about transitioning to organic milk production, says NY Organic Dairy Initiative Project Manager Fay Benson with the Cornell University South Central NY Regional Team.
The transition to organic production can be challenging to plan and may take up to three years to complete, Benson said. The ‘Tools for Transitioning to Organic Dairy’ webinar is for those who work with dairies interested in becoming organic producers and farmers considering the transition.
In addition to Benson, the webinar will feature presenters with the Northeast Organic Farming Association, USDA Farm Services Agency, and USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service. Presentations will cover the requirements for organic certification, tools to adjust conventional farming practices to meet those requirements, and the types of federal loans and Environmental Quality Incentives Program Organic Initiative resources that can help with transition costs.
Other topics include how to develop an Organic System Plan, spreadsheets for figuring the cost of transitioning cropland, other tools for making the switch to organic dairy crops production, and return on investment data.
Register for the webinar at http://blogs.cornell.edu/
The NY Organic Dairy Initiative receives funding from the New York Farm Viability Institute and support from Cornell Cooperative Extension dairy extension teams statewide.