Local, Regional & Safe Foods UA Extension

Local, Regional & Safe Foods UA Extension Supporting local, regional & safe food systems development in Arkansas through education and outreach led by Dr. Amanda Philyaw Perez & a growing team.

Focus on Community, Local and Regional Food Systems The farm to table movement is growing in Arkansas. Many communities have created farmers' markets, established community gardens, started serving farm fresh food in school cafeterias and more. Arkansas is seeing an increased interests in sustainable agriculture and locally grown foods. A growing number of farms are producing a wide variety of locally produced vegetables, fruits, grain, nuts, seeds and livestock. Focus on Produce Safety Keeping up with regulations to ensure your farm is using best practices can be daunting. Extension can provide fundamental, science-based, on-farm food safety knowledge to fresh fruit and vegetable farmers, packers, regulatory personnel and others interested in the safety of fresh produce in Arkansas. The FSMA is a federal act that requires producers and processors of fresh fruits and vegetables to implement certain controls to prevent contamination of our nation’s food system. The act gives power to the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to establish regulations for the production of fresh fruits and vegetables, (The Produce Safety Rule) and regulations for processors (The Preventive Controls Rule).

Operating as usual

The LRSF team sends our best wishes to our very own Dr. Natacha Cureau today!! We hope she is finding a clever way to ce...
11/19/2020

The LRSF team sends our best wishes to our very own Dr. Natacha Cureau today!! We hope she is finding a clever way to celebrate 🎉 her birthday 🎂 this evening.

Help us send her good cheer! 🥳

Arkansas produce growers! Our FINAL remote Produce Safety Grower Training is coming up on December 1 & 2 from 8am - 12:3...
11/17/2020

Arkansas produce growers! Our FINAL remote Produce Safety Grower Training is coming up on December 1 & 2 from 8am - 12:30pm each day. If you are required to comply with the FDA's FSMA Produce Safety Rule please be sure to register by NEXT Tuesday, 11/24 at 11:59pm Central.

Only $20 for Arkansas farmers!

REGISTER HERE ➡ https://uaex.formstack.com/forms/psa_remote_2

Registration includes access to the remote course, all training materials, and a certificate of completion if you attend all modules on both days. All you need is internet access, a ZOOM account, web camera, and microphone. Attendance will be monitored, so please be sure all equipment is working properly each day.

Questions ❓ Contact Rip Weaver at [email protected]

Be sure to join Arkansas Farm to School tomorrow for their next Network Conversation on local food procurement in Arkans...
11/11/2020

Be sure to join Arkansas Farm to School tomorrow for their next Network Conversation on local food procurement in Arkansas! More details in the shared post. 🍎

Register here ➡ https://bit.ly/2JCt5lz

Who is joining us next week for our Network Conversation on Local Procurement? On Thursday November 12 at 2:00 p.m. Ally Mrachek, Child Nutrition Director at Fayetteville Public Schools will share their farm to school story and how their program, FPS Seed to Student, has continued to purchase more and more local food. Register: https://bit.ly/2JCt5lz

A friendly reminder from our friends at the UA Division of Agriculture Public Policy Center about this important day in ...
11/03/2020

A friendly reminder from our friends at the UA Division of Agriculture Public Policy Center about this important day in our country. See the shared post for more information on how you can cast your ballot today. Everyone, please stay safe and get your civic duty on!

It’s Election Day! Voting locations are open across Arkansas until 7:30 p.m.

Remember to bring your photo ID to the polls along with your plan to stay safe. Wearing a mask is strongly encouraged.

Questions about voting today? Find your county clerk’s contact information at https://tinyurl.com/ARclerkinfo2020

And of course, there’s still time to read up on the 3 Arkansas ballot issues at www.uaex.edu/ballot.

#ARballot #ElectionDayInArkansas #ThankYourPollWorker UA Division of Agriculture Public Policy Center

Need training in produce safety on the farm?? Be sure to register for our next Produce Safety Alliance Grower Training o...
11/02/2020

Need training in produce safety on the farm?? Be sure to register for our next Produce Safety Alliance Grower Training on November 9-10 (8am-12:30pm each day) by TONIGHT, Nov 2 at 11:59pm CST. Only $20 for Arkansas farmers! Course, training manual, and certificate of completion included with cost. See the registration form for more information including certification requirements.

REGISTER HERE ➡ https://uaex.formstack.com/forms/psa_remote_3

Another group of produce growers and industry professionals trained in produce safety on the farm! 👏 At our Produce Safe...
10/29/2020

Another group of produce growers and industry professionals trained in produce safety on the farm! 👏

At our Produce Safety Alliance Grower Training this month, we were able to share and connect these folks to federal regulation that their farms are required to understand and be in compliance with. Another step towards a healthy and safe food system here in Arkansas and beyond! CONGRATULATIONS TO THEM! 🥳

We have two more trainings available in 2020. Be sure to sign up ASAP to reserve your spot!

REGISTER FOR NOV: https://uaex.formstack.com/forms/psa_remote_3

REGISTER FOR DEC: https://uaex.formstack.com/forms/psa_remote_2

Who loves Apple Butter made right here in Arkansas?! We sure do! 🍎🍏🍎🍏🍎So much so that some of our team members travelled...
10/28/2020

Who loves Apple Butter made right here in Arkansas?! We sure do!
🍎🍏🍎🍏🍎

So much so that some of our team members travelled to the Arkansas Food Innovation Center at the Department of Food Science, University of Arkansas last week to help process locally sourced apples into this delicious fall-time food fav. Yum, yum!!

If you are in NWA/Fayetteville area, consider buying a jar (or a case!) of the cinnamon-y concoction made by faculty, students, and volunteers to raise funds for the University’s Food Science Club.

See the pictured flyer for more information on pricing and how to order, pay, & pick-up.

🌟 JOB OPPORTUNITY 🌟PROGRAM ASSOCIATE Position Available at University of Arkansas Fruit Research Station in Clarksville,...
10/27/2020

🌟 JOB OPPORTUNITY 🌟

PROGRAM ASSOCIATE Position Available at University of Arkansas Fruit Research Station in Clarksville, AR // The program associate in fruit breeding and production is responsible for managing, carrying out maintenance, and research in our advanced breeding and production trials. See link below for more details.

Check out this great video about the FRS: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=udGvtXJZuy0&feature=youtu.be

Please email Dr. Jackie Lee, Resident Director of FRS, [email protected] or call (479)-530-8163 if you have any questions. If you would like to apply please visit: https://uasys.wd5.myworkdayjobs.com/UASYS/job/Clarksville/Program-Associate---12-MONTH_R0001246

‼️📣UPDATE📣‼️ RESCHEDULED to FRIDAY, Oct 30 at 1:30 pm CSTOn Wednesday, October 28, 2020, 1:30 p.m. CST the Arkansas Depa...
10/26/2020

‼️📣UPDATE📣‼️ RESCHEDULED to FRIDAY, Oct 30 at 1:30 pm CST

On Wednesday, October 28, 2020, 1:30 p.m. CST the Arkansas Department of Agriculture and Heifer USA are hosting a virtual farm field trip and all are invited. We will tour the certified organic production gardens, hear expert advice on gardening best practices, and celebrate local successes from across the state. Attendees will be able to ask questions and interact throughout the LIVE event. In case of rain, the virtual event will be hosted on October 29, 2020, at 1:30 p.m. CST.

Register link: https://www.cognitoforms.com/ArkansasAgriculture1/ArkansasFarmToSchoolMonth

10/23/2020

There is still time to join us for our FREE webinar, Food Safety Documentation and COVID-19 Preparedness for Small Food Manufacturers at www.uaex.edu/food-safety-webinar. We go live at Noon Central Time TODAY. See you there!

Join the conversation to hear about Arkansas Farm to School, goal setting, and creating action steps. Cassidy Hobler wit...
10/21/2020

Join the conversation to hear about Arkansas Farm to School, goal setting, and creating action steps. Cassidy Hobler with FoodCorps Arkansas will share tools and resources that help schools evaluate their farm to school program and create yearly goals.

WHEN❓ October 22, 2020 at 3:30pm CST
REGISTRATION ➡ https://tinyurl.com/ARF2S-GoalSetting

Join the conversation to hear about Arkansas Farm to School, goal setting, and creating action steps. Cassidy Hobler with FoodCorps Arkansas will share tools and resources that help schools evaluate their farm to school program and create yearly goals.
Date: October 22, 2020, 3:30 p.m.

Register here: https://us02web.zoom.us/meeting/register/tZcqdOmspj4sHtZJyVzu5W57A4nhUNF5dvb6

New farmers!! What equipment will you need in the future for your vegetable farming? This webinar hosted by Center for A...
10/19/2020

New farmers!! What equipment will you need in the future for your vegetable farming? This webinar hosted by Center for Arkansas Farms and Food will answer that. Join on Wednesday, October 28th from 12-1:30pm CST.

REGISTER for FREE ➡️ https://bit.ly/357XbVo

It seems lately, there has been a celebration day for everything... did you know that TODAY is Global Handwashing Day?! ...
10/15/2020

It seems lately, there has been a celebration day for everything... did you know that TODAY is Global Handwashing Day?! How fitting for the times we are in AND for food, farm, and produce safety!

Make sure to always wash your hands for at least 20 seconds with soap and water, dry thoroughly, and dispose of the towel in a trash receptacle. You want to do this after eating, touching dirty surfaces, touching your face, using the restroom, coughing/sneezing, and any other activity in which your hands may have been contaminated.

For more information on how to properly wash your hands, check out Global Handwashing Day's Handwashing Handbook at https://tinyurl.com/GlobalHandwashingHandbook.

Stay safe, healthy, and happy! 🖐🧼🧴💦

Today is #GlobalHandwashingDay! What are you doing to ensure #HandHygieneforAll? Comment below!

Only 12 hours left for you to register for our next Produce Safety Grower Training on October 21 & 22. Register at the l...
10/14/2020

Only 12 hours left for you to register for our next Produce Safety Grower Training on October 21 & 22. Register at the link below by 11:59pm TONIGHT, October 14th! Cost is only $20 for Arkansas farmers.

REGISTRATION: https://uaex.formstack.com/forms/psa_remote_4

It's almost here and you're invited! National Farm to School Network is hosting a virtual conversation about shifting po...
10/13/2020

It's almost here and you're invited! National Farm to School Network is hosting a virtual conversation about shifting power & racial justice in the #farmtoschool movement and wider food system. Join to learn, share & take action in your community. Oct. 14, 1-3pm ET. Register → http://bit.ly/NFSN-Register

#F2SMonth

There is still time to add your data to the Farmers Market Coalition’s national survey of farmers markets and the Econom...
10/12/2020

There is still time to add your data to the Farmers Market Coalition’s national survey of farmers markets and the Economic Impact of COVID-19. If you are a market operator with a market that was operational anytime in 2020, please take 10 minutes to complete this questionnaire.

Thank you! 🌱

Click here to take the survey ➡️ https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLSfpS_4eqHte3rq3aU5XRGoMrC1IG4MSEbKCAx7Ywz_dNGo88g/viewform

#FarmersMarketsAreEssential #FarmersMarketsCount

Market operators! There is still time to add your data to our national survey of farmers markets and the Economic Impact of COVID-19. If you are a market operator with a market that was operational anytime in 2020, please take 10 minutes to complete this questionnaire.

https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLSfpS_4eqHte3rq3aU5XRGoMrC1IG4MSEbKCAx7Ywz_dNGo88g/viewform

Back in April, when we were all just beginning to figure out what hit us, we sent out a survey to market operators to begin to gauge the impact of the pandemic on the farmers market sector. Through those responses and other information that market leaders have been sharing with FMC, our team has been getting a sense of the complexity and diversity of COVID-19 impacts. That information has influenced our technical assistance program and our advocacy on behalf of markets since the spring.

Now, over six months into the crisis, we are reaching out again to get a big picture sense of how farmers markets across the country are faring economically.

The response data from this survey will inform FMC's future work and services, and will be shared with USDA agencies as well as national food systems networks and supporters. No individual organizational or market-level data will be made public and any state-level data will only be shared if enough responses from that area allow individual data to be kept anonymous. The more information we collect from the farmers market sector, the more of an impact we can have amplifying the voices, needs, and challenges of farmers market operators like you.

#FarmersMarketsAreEssential #FarmersMarketsCount

We don’t like to toot our own horn too often, if ever, but we wanted to ask for some “LOVE through LIKES” today. If you ...
10/07/2020

We don’t like to toot our own horn too often, if ever, but we wanted to ask for some “LOVE through LIKES” today. If you enjoy our page, our content, resources, and shared adventures in all things local and safe foods in Arkansas, please give us a virtual thumbs up by Liking our page. And feel free to take this a step further and share our page with your Facebook friends. We love sharing our updates with as many of you as we can!

We are honored to continue serving Arkansas farmers, growers, small food business owners, and all local foods stakeholders in the state. Thank you for your support! 👍❤️🌱

Dr. Amanda Philyaw Perez here today with a big thank you 🙏🏽 to my Department of Horticulture for these lovely plants 🌱, ...
10/06/2020

Dr. Amanda Philyaw Perez here today with a big thank you 🙏🏽 to my Department of Horticulture for these lovely plants 🌱, supporting my time away from work to deal with family emergencies 🏥 and the recent loss of my Grandmother Philyaw. I work for the best organization with wonderful people.

My dear grandmother taught me to value local foods growing up in her house. As a child, I ran across the street to buy local eggs and shelled purple hull peas on her porch.

Thank you to the clients and colleagues that have been patient with my delayed responses. People that grow our food also value deep family ties and recognize family comes before the work. Be well everyone. I will continue to be in and out of the office over the rest of October.

Fall is in the air! 🍂 Just a quick reminder about our resource on how farms can keep their guests and staff safe as they...
10/04/2020

Fall is in the air! 🍂 Just a quick reminder about our resource on how farms can keep their guests and staff safe as they host fall time activities like corn mazes, wagon rides, petting zoos, pumpkin patches, and more. Click the shared post below ⬇️ to get your FREE copy. Happy fall, y’all! 🍂

Each fall, many farms host a variety of season-specific activities including corn mazes, wagon rides, and pumpkin patches. These activities are beloved by Arkansans and also generate a large percentage of annual income for farms. The coronavirus has caused some hesitation, yet with preparation farms can remain open while managing risk.

Our team at Extension along with the Arkansas Agritourism Association and the Arkansas Department of Health have created a Fall Farm Activity Guidelines & COVID-19 resource with useful information on how to safely operate these activities this season. Some tips include:

🍂Providing all guests with hand sanitizer
🍂Disinfecting all commonly-touched surfaces
🍂Not allowing access to individuals who have been ill or in contact with another ill person within the past 14 days
🍂Communicating your COVID-19 policies to guests via website, social media, and signage at your farm
🍂Distributing masks or face coverings - be creative and add your farm name or logo!

Please view the resource at https://tinyurl.com/y4ddpsuv. For more information, please contact Rip Weaver at [email protected].

First Saturday in October, you know what that means... time to go pick up some pumpkins from your local farm or market! ...
10/03/2020

First Saturday in October, you know what that means... time to go pick up some pumpkins from your local farm or market! Be sure to bring a jacket - it’s chilly out this morning.

Happy weekend, everyone!

#supportlocal #happyfall

We have a late-day Friday announcement about the Share Grounds!Dr. Tionna Jenkins, an Arkansas native and public health ...
10/02/2020

We have a late-day Friday announcement about the Share Grounds!

Dr. Tionna Jenkins, an Arkansas native and public health and policy expert, has been a part of our mentorship program designed to help food businesses create new product ideas and scale up existing recipes. She is excited to have successfully completed the Share Grounds mentorship and earned a wholesale food manufacturing license from the Arkansas Department of Health to create a food product line named in honor of her grandmothers, O’nita Lee Foods & Products, LLC.

We are so proud of Dr. Jenkins and congratulate her on this achievement toward making her local food business a reality! 🙌🥳

For more information about the Share Grounds including on how to become client yourself, please visit www.uaex.edu/sharegrounds

10/01/2020
Arkansas Farm to School

Happy Arkansas Farm to School Month! Our Extension team is happy to partner with Arkansas Farm to School and the Arkansas Department of Agriculture to help build awareness, access, and education around local, healthy foods for schools and the children they serve in our great state. View the message from the Governor to discover how this program benefits us all.

Please be sure to Like the pages linked above and visit https://www.agriculture.arkansas.gov/arkansas-department-of-agriculture-programs/farm-to-school/ for more information on this great program. 🍎

Governor Asa Hutchinson has proclaimed October as Arkansas Farm to School Month! This recognition is part of nationwide efforts to connect schools, early childhood education sites, and other organizations with farms to bring local, healthy food to children. Thank you Governor Hutchinson for your support! #ARF2SMonth #CelebrateLocal

Don't forget, the deadline to register for our next REMOTE Produce Safety Alliance Grower Training on October 21 & 22 is...
09/30/2020

Don't forget, the deadline to register for our next REMOTE Produce Safety Alliance Grower Training on October 21 & 22 is fast approaching! Sign up by 11:59pm on October 14th to secure your spot. There is room for 20 produce farmers, and cost is only $20 (Arkansas residents) which includes the 2-day training, training materials, and a certificate of completion if you attend all modules on both days. You will need access to the internet, a webcam, microphone, and ZOOM. Participants will be monitored for attendance and participation. DON'T DELAY - REGISTER TODAY!

REGISTER HERE ➡️ https://uaex.formstack.com/forms/psa_remote_4

Contact Julia Fryer at [email protected] with any questions.

09/30/2020
Local, Regional & Safe Foods UA Extension

REMINDER 📣 This Listening Session is TODAY, 9/30 at 4pm Central. Please click the shared post here to learn more and find out how to join.

Attention farmers and ranchers who sell to local food markets and their representatives in the federal crop insurance industry:

There will be one more Virtual Listening Session on the Feasibility of Insuring Local Food Production two weeks from today on Wednesday, September 30th at 4pm Central. You are invited to participate in the session with Agralytica, which is working under contract for USDA’s Risk Management Agency (RMA).

WHY PARTICIPATE?
As part of the 2018 Farm Bill, Congress required RMA to solicit feedback about improved crop insurance coverage options for farmers and ranchers selling to local food markets including but not limited to farmers markets, community supported agriculture (CSAs), road-side stands, restaurants, retailers, schools, and institutions. This includes discussing how existing crop insurance programs can be improved, as well as exploring the possibility of a new crop insurance program. The feedback received will help identify potential changes and/or additions to insurance options for producers supplying local markets.

HOW TO PARTICIPATE
By Zoom, click on the link here and, if prompted, enter the passcode "local"
https://us02web.zoom.us/j/87372872344?pwd=ZEZza2RBS3M0Zm9VeloxSXZXUHczdz09

Address

2301 S. University Ave.
Little Rock, AR
72204

General information

Focus on Community, Local and Regional Food Systems The farm to table movement is growing in Arkansas. Many communities have created farmers' markets, established community gardens, started serving farm fresh food in school cafeterias and more. Arkansas is seeing an increased interests in sustainable agriculture and locally grown foods. A growing number of farms are producing a wide variety of locally produced vegetables, fruits, grain, nuts, seeds and livestock. Focus on Produce Safety Keeping up with regulations to ensure your farm is using best practices can be daunting. Extension can provide fundamental, science-based, on-farm food safety knowledge to fresh fruit and vegetable farmers, packers, regulatory personnel and others interested in the safety of fresh produce in Arkansas. The FSMA is a federal act that requires producers and processors of fresh fruits and vegetables to implement certain controls to prevent contamination of our nation’s food system. The act gives power to the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to establish regulations for the production of fresh fruits and vegetables, (The Produce Safety Rule) and regulations for processors (The Preventive Controls Rule).

Opening Hours

Monday 08:00 - 16:30
Tuesday 08:00 - 16:30
Wednesday 08:00 - 16:30
Thursday 08:00 - 16:30
Friday 08:00 - 16:30

Telephone

(501) 671-2000

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Have a favorite recipe that you want to turn into a food business or grow local produce and want to sell to new markets? Join us Dec. 7 from 8:30 to 4:30 in Little Rock. Please share!!
The Cooperative Extension Service is now seeking a Program Associate – Food Systems and Food Safety for their Little Rock office. For more details, please visit our jobs portal at http://jobs.uaex.edu Posting # 739