Contact: Brad DeVries (202) 547-5754
Brian DeVore (612) 653-0618
NEW 'FREEDOM TO FARM' OPTIONS GUIDE NOW AVAILABLE
"Making the Most of Freedom to Farm: Innovative uses of Planting Flexibility and
Conservation Programs" is now available from the Land Stewardship Project (LSP).
This 40-page guide reviews profitable, environmentally beneficial farming
practices that are easier for farmers to adopt under new national farm
In 1996, Congress eliminated most of the planting rules that required farmers to
plant certain crops in order to qualify for federal support payments. At the
same time, the law, which its creators dubbed "Freedom to Farm," does away with
federal protections against wide swings in market prices.
"Making the Most of Freedom to Farm" offers farmers an overview of innovative
practices that were difficult to adopt under the old system of commodity
payments -- beneficial crop rotations, integrated crop/livestock operations,
conservation tillage, and other approaches -- and points toward recent sources
of more in-depth information. The guide includes chapters on "Managing for Total
Farm Results," "Making Sense of Federal Programs," "Rotations and Cover Crops
for Cost Control," "New Livestock Ideas," and "Tillage Tactics." Each chapter
includes real-life examples of farms and farmers who are already having success
with these techniques and concludes with an extensive list of contact
information, print sources and internet resources.
"Farmers have a great opportunity right now to look for an advantage, for the
sort of integrated approaches that will make their farms proftable for the long
haul. We can't make it just by copying what the big guys are doing on a smaller
scale," said Dave Serfling, a Preston, Minn., farmer who produces hay, corn,
hogs, beef and sheep on a highly diverse operation. "As prices for the major
commodities shake out a bit, I think more farmers will start to realize the
solid, long term business advantages of diverse and more complex rotations."
Free copes of "Making the Most of Freedom to Farm" are available from Land
Stewardship Project offices in the Minnesota communities of Lewiston, Montevideo
and White Bear Lake. If you'd like to oder a copy through the mail, send $4 for
postage and handling (Minnesota residents add 6.5% sales tax; LSP members
receive a 10% discount) to: LSP, 2200 4th St., White Bear Lake, MN 55110. Call
(612) 653-0618 for information on bulk orders. A web version of the chapter,
"Making Sense of Federal Programs," complete table of contents and news release
about "Making the Most of Freedom to Farm is available online at:
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