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2016 RME and Targeted States (TS) Agreements

Awardee Project Project Description Award Amount Award Type State(s)
University of Massachusetts (UMass) Extension Comprehensive Crop Insurance/Risk Management Education Program The recipient will develop and deliver a comprehensive crop insurance/risk management education program for all agricultural producers in Massachusetts.  The program will additionally target beginning, legal immigrant, organic and socially disadvantaged producers; groups historically identified as having limited or no knowledge of Federal Crop Insurance programs. The educational program will be delivered through several avenues including but not limited to: workshops and field days conducted by staff; field days and meetings in cooperation with partner organizations; exhibiting at agricultural trade shows and other agricultural events; disseminating information through Extension and cooperating partner organizations; direct electronic mailings to producers and to partner organizations for distribution to their members; a webpage devoted to crop insurance and risk management within the Extension's web network; a Facebook Page; and, finally the opportunity for producers to have “one-on-one” sessions to individually discuss their specific needs in a private, comfortable, non-pressured and unbiased setting. The risks, challenges, diversification and uniqueness of Massachusetts’ agriculture separates farming in Massachusetts from other parts of the country. The recipient will utilize it’s considerable resources to develop a program that understands these unique nuances and deliver a program that will benefit all agricultural producers in Massachusetts. $217,995.00 TS Massachusetts
University of Connecticut Crop Insurance and Risk Management Promotion, Education and Training for Connecticut Farmers and Growers The recipient will promote crop insurance products to Connecticut farmers and growers.  The use of crop insurance to manage risk, an understanding of how using crop insurance can affect other farm risk management decisions, and sales closing date information will be  emphasized in educational and training programs. Crop insurance provisions in the current Farm Bill including whole farm revenue protection will be highlighted. Farmer actions resulting from  project programs will be identified using evaluation tools. Targeted groups include established farmers, beginning farmers, women, veterans, minority producers, legal immigrants, socially disadvantaged farmers, retiring farmers using transition strategies to help new farmers get started and new or established farmers converting production and marketing systems to pursue new markets. Communications to over 6,000 farmers, growers, and advisers will  provide details on crop insurance, programs and events, and other risk management topics. The Connecticut Farm Risk Management and Crop Insurance website and our partnering organizations' websites will also provide information on  crop insurance and programs. Extension programs and events sponsored by our partnering organizations will play important roles in reaching and educating farmers and growers. $221,000.00 TS Connecticut
University of Delaware Crop Insurance and Risk Management Education to Delaware's Diverse Agricultural Community The recipient will collaborate with stakeholders to deliver crop insurance and risk management education to Delaware producers through an essential in-state network. Program changes resulting from the 2014 Farm Bill make the success of farm operations increasingly dependent on their risk management decisions. Emerging tools such as Whole Farm Revenue Coverage, as well as enhancements to more established crop insurance tools, will be highlighted in this project. Programs will be delivered through a variety of mediums, including presentations to small and large audiences, hands-on activities, individual/family consultations, social media and written materials. The recipient will make comprehensive crop insurance education available and understandable for the diverse spectrum of Delaware producers. The project will reach out to over young, beginning, women, socially disadvantaged, specialty crop and organic/sustainable producers, as well as conventional row crop operations of all sizes. As a result of participating in this project, producers will be able to make informed decisions about a range of crop insurance and revenue coverage options, by sales closing deadlines, to best manage their production, price, and revenue risk. $246,298.00 TS Delaware
New Jersey Department of Agriculture Crop Insurance Education for New Jersey Farmers The recipient will develop and implement a comprehensive crop insurance education program that ensures all types of farmers throughout New Jersey are well informed so they can take advantage of existing and emerging crop insurance products. Experienced educators will help producers understand: the kinds of risks addressed by crop insurance and how to manage those risks; features of existing and emerging crop insurance products including Whole-Farm Revenue Protection and Supplemental Coverage Option; farm record keeping and planning; and how to make informed decisions on crop insurance prior to the sales closing date deadline. Risk management education and outreach to farmers will focus on all traditional, new/beginning, women, socially disadvantaged, veterans, livestock, organic, operations in transition of changing farming practices as well as producers of products marketed as part of a local and regional food system.  Delivery of multi-media information on crop insurance will have an impact of reaching producers. $238,000.00 TS New Jersey
UNH Cooperative Extension Crop Insurance and Risk Management Education for New Hampshire Farmers The recipient will reach NH farmers through educational events which will address strategies and techniques for managing production, marketing, financial and human resource risks. These events will incorporate efforts to help farmers understand the kinds of risks addressed by crop insurance, features of existing and emerging crop insurance policies, use of crop insurance to manage risks, effects crop insurance coverage may have on other management decisions, and importance of making informed decisions about crop insurance prior to sales closing dates. Educational events will include 14 whole and half-day workshops and conferences, 4 multi-day intensive training sessions, 6 seminars, and one webinar with multiple sites. Programs offered will cover the diverse enterprises and markets found in NH with emphasis on beginning farmers, women operators, and farmers converting production and marketing systems to reach new markets. Intensive training efforts will also be directed toward immigrant farmers.In addition through promotional efforts, a much larger audience of farmers will learn about the features, kinds of risks covered, and closing dates of crop insurance policies. Promotional efforts planned include radio broadcasts, websites, news releases, digital marketing, and personal E-mails. $196,473.00 TS New Hampshire
University of Rhode Island Risk Management and Crop Insurance Education for Rhode Island Growers The recipient will use extension meetings, RMA fact sheet e-mailings, newsletters, websites, and one-on-one meetings to make sure Rhode Island growers are fully informed regarding risk management tools and crop insurance products.  We will emphasize Whole-Farm Revenue Protection and farm business benchmarking. Partners will integrate information on crop insurance opportunities for each of the commodity groups at meetings, as well as produce 6 newsletters which will focus on how crop insurance can affect other types of risk (e. g. production, marketing, finance, human resources, or legal) and will highlight farm business benchmarking in one newsletter.  Additionally, the recipient will include write-ups of upcoming and recent crop insurance meetings, sales closing dates, insurance providers, and contacts for additional information in these newsletters.  Partners will also introduce risk management and crop insurance to beginning producers.  We will offer educational meetings that have been well attended in the past which have included some aspect of crop production (pruning, cover crops, organic growing) or integrated pest management, with pesticide recertification credits offered where appropriate. $202,000.00 TS Rhode Island
University of Maine Cooperative Extension Crop Insurance Education for Maine The recipient is uniquely positioned to deliver a broad outreach program of crop insurance education to Maine farmers by utilizing their strong internal network and relationships with state commodity associations to give crop insurance and risk management a prominent place on conference agendas, in farm publications, and online.  The recipient's reach will target the following producers: diversified crop and beginning farmers, respectively.  We will partner with the Maine Vegetable and Small Fruit Growers Association and the Beginning Farmer Resource Network of Maine to tailor risk management and business planning education to meet those farmers' needs. Specifically, the recipient will provide crop insurance education to farmers at commodity meetings and workshops, through webinars, Extension newsletters, our Maine crop insurance education website, and on existing, commodity-based websites.  Outreach will keep farmers abreast of available policies, updates and deadlines, required records, and connect farmers to resources at regional and national USDA-RMA levels. As a result of this project farmers’ knowledge of risk management programs and their likelihood of enrolling will increase. $204,580.00 TS Maine
Cornell University New York Crop Insurance and Risk Management Education Project The recipient will provide New York farmers with compelling, clear, and accurate information on crop insurance through web-based decision-support tools, advertisements, mailings, articles, trade shows, and face-to-face meetings. Online-based decision-support tools will build on successful approaches in other states that currently do not provide coverage for New York. Educational materials and outreach activities will target many types of underserved farmers, including women, veteran, and young and beginning farmers. Most media and outreach activities are scheduled to maximize exposure to crop insurance information in advance of the March 15 deadline; afterwards we will continue to develop and refine materials and online presence, providing continuing information during the year. The recipient will reach more producers with targeted ads in a variety of outlets and producers via 13 major tradeshows. The recipient will reach producers at 56 scheduled extension meetings and other activities with our partners. $401,000.00 TS New York
WVURC - Extension Service Risk Management Education for Farmers in the Targeted State of West Virginia The recipient will interact with farmers is through a combination of mass media and informal sessions attached to other meetings, but mostly through classes we have developed ourselves or in cooperation with our many collaborators to deliver nearly 32,000 hours of training. Thousands of those interactions will yield meaningful outcomes from those participating. Some of those surveyed will report that they are more aware or better informed about managing their risk, but many, many others will report they plan to take steps, or already have, toward improved record keeping, financial management, price protection and food safety. Many other producers will report that they are now in a working cooperative or in the planning stages to form a cooperative business to help them increase their profitability, market share, or sustainability. The recipient will deliver this body of work in over 65 different communities including 8 livestock markets, countless high school classrooms, the Charleston Civic Center, and many others. $230,000.00 TS West Virginia
University of Vermont and State Agricultural College Crop Insurance and Risk Management Education for Vermont Farmers The recipient will conduct across Vermont 188 education events with an additional 200 farm visits and 23 articles that will reach 8689 producers. Topics covered will include use of crop insurance to reduce risk and address other risk reduction topics in production, financial, and marketing that covers dairy marketing to forage production to cover crops to reduce phosphorus losses to maple syrup production to using technology for fruit producers to proper practices for market vegetables to producing benchmarks to land access to intergenerational farm transition. Education venues include field demonstrations, workshops, farm viability consultations, pasture walks, and one-on-one technical assistance. The educational programs will focus on all identifiable produces from dairy farmers to immigrants to crop farmers to apple producers to vegetable farmers.  Extra effort will be made to reach small scale, organic, and limited resource farmers to strengthen their sustainability from understanding risk reducing management practices. As a result, we expect farmers to become more knowledgeable about applicable production, financial, and marketing risk reducing practices, adapt to Vermont’s Required Agricultural Practices through pollution reducing practices, and make greater use of crop insurance, whole farm revenue insurance, FSA’s NAP program, and supplemental coverage. $229,000.00 TS Vermont
Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture Crop Insurance Education Program The recipient will help producers better understand and utilize the many risk management options available. This will be accomplished working collaboratively to build new partnerships and grow the success of existing partners providing crop insurance education, training presentations, magazine advertisements, press releases, social media, newsletters, direct mail, sector-specific brochures and web-based resources.  The recipient is continuing to make education materials more accessible for producers and also for a more diverse audience, by expanding our social media reach via Facebook and YouTube, and continuing our relationship with partners such as the Women's Agricultural Network. The planned live presentations this year will provide almost 9,000 hours of face-to-face education for producers.  Printed and online materials will be delivered to over 2 million contacts with producers and agricultural pofessionals. Pennsylvania agriculture is highly diverse and risk management education is a top initiative of the Department.  The recipient is uniquely suited to educate the industry through existing positive relationships with agricultural organizations, such as Penn State, and the agricultural community as a whole. $475,000.00 TS Pennsylvania
Maryland Department of Agriculture Maryland Crop Insurance Education and Promotion The recipient will team with its partners to provide timely, relevant crop insurance information to Maryland farmers in this Targeted States project. This Targeted States program is a priority as it serves to prepare the state's farmers with risk management education and tools to be prepared for natural disasters. The recipient and their partners will bring their 13 years of experience in crop insurance promotion and education to work with the state's 12,526 farming operations. Tools in this project will include direct mailed newsletters and calendars, as well as presentations to farmers, web-based education and social media. Reflecting the emphasis created in the Agricultural Act of 2014, Maryland's experienced team will target beginning farmers, immigrant farmers, socially disadvantaged farmers, farmers preparing to retire and new and established farmers who are converting production and marketing systems to pursue new markets. $285,000.00 TS Maryland
National Crop Insurance Services Developing Marketing Plans and Strategies for Limited Resource Producers of Underserved Commodities in North Carolina StrikeForce Counties The recipient will enable small, limited resource, and socially disadvantaged producers of underserved commodities and specialty crops in North Carolina StrikeForce counties, to understand and respond to marketing risk. Participants will acquire the market analysis skills and understand their own operations sufficiently to develop and implement detailed marketing plans at the enterprise level. Three sequential workshops (18 hours) supplemented by personal assignments and individualized counseling (60 hours) will be delivered in two locations to producers via a partnership of subject matter experts and local educators. Participants will develop, for each decision variable in the Marketing Mix (product, price, place, promotion, people) a written goal, consistent with consumer preferences for their commodities. For each goal they will delineate three specific actions they will take to reach those goals, and commit to implement their specified marketing plans. Extension Educators will support and monitor progress throughout the project recording the number of actions completed. This innovative, concentrated and iterative program, with sequential workshops, hands-on activities and individualized follow-up, provides participants an opportunity to succeed. This educational approach typically leads to long-term behavioral change, consistent with the philosophy that behavior changes are more likely with sustained personal support. $80,188.00 RME North Carolina
The Pennsylvania State University Promoting Proactive Farm Risk Management for Women, Hispanic and Next-Generation Farmers in Pennsylvania The recipient will instruct under-served farmers to proactively manage risk through Crop Insurance and business strategies most appropriate to specialty crop producers. The recipient and partners will deliver twenty 90-minute presentations, Visualizing and Managing your Farm Business Risk (VMFBR), addressing strategies to amass farm histories needed to successfully apply for NAP and Whole Farm coverage. Important information will be converted to short online videos, learn now's; a participant workbook developed. All materials will also be available in Spanish language; four additional Agricultural Alternatives fact sheets will be translated to support in-class activities. The team will engage farmers individually at agricultural event booths (Keystone Farm Show, PA Women in Ag Conference, and Ag Progress Days) distributing NAP/Whole Farm handouts and Agricultural Alternatives to at least 600 producers. $55,608.00 RME Pennsylvania
New Entry Sustainable Farming Project Educating Massachusetts' Beginning Farmers about Financial Management and Risk Management Solutions for Long-Term Economic Viability The recipient will provide crop insurance outreach, risk management and financial management education, training and technical assistance (T&TA) to 300+ small, limited-resource and socially-disadvantaged beginning farmers in their first 1-3 years of operation in 9 Eastern Massachusetts counties. 1,000 other producers statewide will access online resources ( This project will achieve proposed results: 1. Beginning and socially disadvantaged farmers receive crop insurance and risk management information via outreach, e-newsletters, and website materials. 2. Aspiring producers will complete 4 ‘Explore Farming!’ workshops 3. Producers will complete a 9-session farm business planning course and develop business plans 4. Producers will attend six field-based crop production workshops, and direct market training. 5. Producers will complete business plans, analyze farm financial information, and implement new production practices. 6. Beginning farmers will establish new farms on three incubator training sites learning production and marketing risk management. 7. Farmers receive 10+ hours of 1-1 risk management-focused technical assistance. 8. Farmers enroll in crop insurance programs. 9. Socially and economically disadvantaged immigrant/refugee farmers receive support to secure independent farmland, address legal risks, expand markets, or access credit. 10. Program results are monitored and evaluated; metrics track farmer participation, producer implementation, and document results. $82,666.00 RME Massachusetts, New Hampshire
Farmer's Outreach Solutions Whole Farm Revenue Program Education and Supporting Recordkeeping to Minority and Strike Force Producers in Virginia as well as Education on the Cultivated Clams Program, Noninsured Crop Disaster Assistance Program (NAP), and other Risk Management Strategies The recipient will deliver crop insurance education on the Whole Farm Revenue Program (WFRP) and Cultivated Clams Program as well as training on the Noninsured Crop Assistance Program (NAP) to Specialty Crop Producers in Virginia. Risk management training will include effective financial management and important legal and tax information impacting Specialty Crop Producers. Special emphasis and outreach strategies with our partners will be directed to minority producers and producers who live in Strike Force areas. The project will educate producers through direct training, one-on-one training, large group keynote presentations, and small group discussions at a variety of educational events: Virginia Farm Bureau Annual Meeting/County Meetings, Virginia State University (New and Beginning, Strike Force, Minority, and Returning Veteran Farmers Conference), Agribusiness Farmers Meeting for Minority Farmers, Virginia Association of Potato and Vegetable Growers, Clam Growers (Eastern Shore Virginia), and Virginia Tech Extension Annual Meeting and Extension Crop (Grapes) Field Day. As a result, Specialty Crop producers in Virginia will learn about the WFRP, Cultivated Clams Program, NAP, and financial management to make better informed decisions. $89,738.00 RME Virginia
LD Consulting, Inc. Whole Farm Revenue Program Education and Supporting Recordkeeping and Risk Management Training to North Carolina Specialty Crop Producers The recipient will deliver Whole Farm Revenue Program (WFRP) crop insurance education to Specialty Crop producers in North Carolina. Special emphasis will be directed to (1) minority and Strike Force producers; and, (2) new and beginning producers who are transitioning from traditional crops to Specialty crops or who will enter production agriculture within 2 years. The risk management training will include effective financial management, benchmarking techniques, and important legal and tax information impacting Specialty Crop producers in North Carolina. The project will educate producers through a variety of educational events including: direct training to large groups, workshops with small groups, interactive instruction in Ag Classrooms including the “Farming is Risky Business” risk management game, one-on-one sessions with (a) Strike Force producers and with (b) producers identified as “local and sustainable” or whose production is marketed as “farm to table.” As a result, Specialty Crop producers in North Carolina will understand WFRP and effective financial management. $84,874.00 RME North Carolina
FamilyFarmed Growing Success: Best Practices in On-Farm Food Safety, Wholesale Marketing and Direct Marketing for Raleigh Region Specialty Crop Farmers The goal of Growing Success is to build the skills of farmers and enable them to better understand opportunities and risks in wholesale and direct marketing and adopt best practices that minimize their risk. The recipient will work with five partners in Maryland, New York, North Carolina, and Pennsylvania to engage small-scale specialty crop farmers who are selling products into local food markets. Participants will be invited to one of six training workshops, receive a companion manual (Wholesale or Direct Market Success), receive two Growing Success/Food Safety/RMA WholeFarm Revenue Protection Insurance news and resources e-blasts, be introduced to the On-Farm Food Safety website where each can create a free food safety plan, and be invited to join an online discussion group where they can find technical assistance answers and topical discussions. We anticipate farmers will make changes to their operations to minimize their risk. Specifically, farmers will increase their understanding about best practices in Wholesale and Direct Marketing, Food Safety and Postharvest Handling Risk Management, and about available Crop Insurance options including Whole Farm Revenue Protection; develop risk management plans and strategies; and begin to implement specific best practices in their operations. $81,881.00 RME Maryland, New York, North Carolina, Pennsylvania
Appalachian Sustainable Agriculture Project (ASAP) Planning for Profit and Risk: Innovative Marketing, Production and Financial Training for Southern Appalachian Farmers The recipient will help small, limited resource, beginning, women, and specialty crop farmers understand and implement marketing, financial, and production risk management strategies and access market opportunities in Western North Carolina. The project includes one full day training, two 3-hour workshops, a ½ day production risk management training, and individual coaching in Asheville, NC, and two ½ day workshops in conjunction with Grower-Buyer meetings located in Sylva, NC and Boone/Blowing Rock, NC. Grower-Buyer meetings help farmers expand into new markets and provide farmers with hands-on opportunities to practice what they learn from the trainings with buyers. This innovative approach combined with the expertise of the recipient and project partners will build the capacity of farmers to manage farm risks and utilize resources and tools available to farmers, like crop insurance. The work is important because it addresses the unique opportunities and challenges facing small farms in local markets in Western North Carolina, and recipient farmer survey results indicate that trainings and market access are areas in which farmers want assistance. $71,694.00 RME North Carolina
Cultivating Community Ethnic Crops in Northern Climes: An Integrated Risk Management Strategy The recipient synthesizes Coastal Enterprises, Inc.'s research/identification of a major potential market supporting Maine's small-scale producers in selling ethnic crops to Greater Boston's refugee/immigrant community; farmers in the recipient's project currently selling ethnic-crops to refugee/immigrant buyers in Maine; producers in the Somali-Bantu Community Mutual Assistance Association, who grow ethnic-crops for their communities; other New England producers who seek greater crop/market diversification. Priority crops identified by CEI/participating producers are amaranth, African eggplant, jalapenos, collard/mustard greens, and jute mallow. This focus on risk-management through ethnic-crop production builds on a successful specialty crop production farmer-training program incorporating risk-management strategies. This project is expected to impact small-scale farm-operations achieve greater economic-viability through understanding risk, insurance-products, and further crop/market diversification; 40 of these achieve further increased-viability through implementing ethnic-crop production/marketing. $50,000.00 RME Maine
National Black Farmers Association Let's Get Protected The recipient will present culturally appropriate sustainable agricultural education with direct technical assistance and capacity building addressing risk management to NC/VA community members including but not limited to legal immigrant, limited resource, socially disadvantaged, lgbt, women, youth and veteran producers to assist them in identifying and managing environmental risk, sustainable organic agriculture production, marketing, legal, financial, and human risk. Participants will be provided technical assistance to become producers of specialty crops and underserved commodities, including livestock and forage as part of the local/regional food system. Along with the Risk Management Agency (RMA), the recipient will develop and deliver a training program to equip and empower community members and producers to (1) increase public awareness and a better understanding of environmental preservation and protection and (2) increase participation by bringing together community members and local, state and federal agencies to address issues and environmental challenges in a format of formal and informal forums for open discussion with a priority goal of preparing community members and producers through capacity building and education to help facilitate appropriate use of existing and emerging risk management tools ensuring sound risk management decisions and compliance with environmental protection policies and requirements. $78,880.00 RME North Carolina, Virginia
Northeast Organic Farming Association of New York Risk Management Tools for NY Organic and Sustainable Producers The recipient will provide organic and sustainable producers in New York State with resources and tools for making sound on-farm management decisions to reduce risk and increase success in all aspects of their farm businesses. This goal will be achieved through four objectives: 1) Creating applicable risk-management training, tools and resources to share with producers and evaluate the effectiveness of project training and tools; 2) Promoting riskmanagement trainings and tools to producers throughout NYS; 3) Increasing organic and sustainable producers’ knowledge and understanding of risk-management tools and strategies and 4) Increasing producers’ knowledge of crop insurance programs available to mitigate production risks. Objectives will be achieved through a combination of classroom workshops, on-farm events, online resources and consultations. Through these training mechanisms, producers will gain knowledge and tools that will enable them to make sound risk-management decisions about production, marketing, legal, financial, and human risk. The targeted audience is organic and sustainable producers in New York State, a group that has historically been comprised of small and limited resource producers. The expected impact is that these producers will learn more about and implement available tools, resources and strategies to manage risks on their farms. $45,794.00 RME New York