USDA Forest Service Grants Veterans and Gold Star Families Free Access to National Forests and Grasslands

Multnomah Falls, Columbia River Gorge, Oregon. (USDA Forest Service photo by Cecilio Ricardo)

Washington NOVEMBER 10, 2020 - Without those brave men and women that served our country and uniform, and without the support of their families, our nation would not be what it is today. To show our gratitude for their selfless service, the USDA Forest Service announced it will offer U.S. military veterans and Gold Star families fee-free access to their national forests and grasslands.


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American timber industry crippled by double whammy of trade war and COVID-19

COVID-19 has hit U.S. furniture sales hard, decreasing the global demand for U.S. timber, a primary input in furniture production. Photo by Nareeta Martin for Unsplash, CC BY-ND
The forestry sector – landowners, logging companies and sawmills – have lost an estimated US$1.1 billion in 2020. Devastating wildfires and Hurricane Laura have played a part, but the COVID-19 pandemic has also contributed to significant losses. If workers are required to stay home, then no trees will be felled or logs sawed into lumber.
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UMaine Extension hosts home maple syrup production webinar Dec. 5

Image Courtesy UMaine Extension 

Orono, Maine — University of Maine Cooperative Extension is hosting a webinar with the Southern Maine Maple Sugarmakers Association (SMMSA) about the home maple syrup production process 9–11:30 a.m. Dec. 5.

Webinar topics include identifying and tapping trees, collecting and boiling sap, and filtering, grading and canning syrup. Instructors include UMaine Extension sustainable agriculture professional Jason Lilley, SMMSA president Rich Morrill, who also owns Nash Valley Farm in Windham, and Frank Ferrucci, owner of Maple Moon Farm in Lebanon.  

Registration is required; a $5 donation is optional. Register on the event webpage. For more information or to request a reasonable accommodation, contact Becky Gray, 207.781.6099;

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Cornell Small Farms Lists Funding Opportunities

Cornell Small Farms Program compiled the following list of funding opportunities.

Regional Conservation Partnership Program Deadline Extended

USDA’s Natural Resources Conservation Service has extended the deadline for potential conservation partners to submit project applications for federal funding through the Regional Conservation Partnership Program (RCPP). NRCS will award up to $360 million to locally driven, public-private partnerships that improve the nation’s water quality, combat drought, enhance soil health, support wildlife habitat, and protect agricultural viability. Learn more and apply by November 30.

Northeast AgEnhancement Grants

Northeast agricultural credit associations and CoBank award AgEnhancement Grants ranging from $500 to $10,000 to help organizations promote awareness and strengthen agriculture, commercial fishing, and forest products industries in the six New England states, New York, and New Jersey. Learn more and apply by December 1.

USDA Providing Additional COVID Assistance to Farmers and Ranchers

Up to an additional $14 billion is available for agricultural producers who continue to face market disruptions and associated costs because of COVID-19. Coronavirus Food Assistance Program (CFAP 2) payments will be made for three categories of commodities: price trigger commodities, flat-rate crops, and sales commodities. Producers can apply at USDA’s Farm Service Agency (FSA) county offices. Learn more and apply by December 11.

Small Business Administration Disaster Loans in Response to COVID

The U.S. Small Business Administration is offering designated states and territories low-interest federal disaster loans for working capital to small businesses suffering substantial economic injury as a result of the Coronavirus (COVID-19). Note that eligible businesses include small agricultural cooperatives and producer cooperatives, but not agricultural enterprises. Learn more.

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Formal community forest management policies often lead to reduced access, resource rights

Community-Owned Sawmill in Oaxac, Mexico. Photo by Reem Hajjar, OSU College of Forestry

CORVALLIS, Ore. - The most comprehensive global analysis of community forestry ever undertaken shows that government policies formalizing local residents' land access and resource rights often backfire by resulting in less access and weakened rights.

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The four sides of the Tree Farm sign: Water. Wildlife. Recreation. Wood.
The mission of the NY Tree Farm Program is to promote the growing of renewable forest resources on private lands in New York State while protecting environmental benefits and increasing public understanding of all benefits of productive forestry. 

Contact us at the NY Tree Farm Office: PO Box 24, Washington Square, Greenwich, NY 12834, (518) 854-7386,
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