We Want to Hear from You!

FoFF staff are traveling the state for our biennial Farmer and Rancher Listening Sessions and we want to hear from you. Our next stops include Gresham/Portland on March 8, Forest Grove (en Español) on March 11, and many others scheduled for southern Oregon, central Oregon, the north Coast, the southern Willamette Valley, and elsewhere throughout March and April. Check out our Farmer and Rancher Listening Session page for all dates, locations and details on how to RSVP. Come make your voice heard and tell us what's on your mind!

We also have surveys for FoFF supporters to take to help us determine our policy and program priorities over the next few years. One survey is for farmers and ranchers, and the other is for everybody else. Please take the survey that applies to you, help us track emerging issues, and make a positive impact for family farmers, ranchers and local food systems in Oregon.

Muckboots in the Capitol - 2018 Oregon Legislative Session Recap

The Oregon Legislature ended its one month ‘short session’ on Saturday, March 3. While topics of land use came up, the issue with the biggest potential impact on Oregon farms and ranches from our perspective was the Clean Energy Jobs legislation, also known as 'cap and invest.' 

Farmers and ranchers are on the front lines of climate change, directly impacted by extreme weather events, a warming climate, and dwindling water supplies. But as land managers, we can also be part of the solution by engaging in practices that sequester carbon in our fields and pastures. As a result, we viewed the Clean Energy Jobs legislation as an opportunity for Oregon to provide significant financial support  for small and mid-sized farms and ranches to adopt or expand climate-friendly farming practices. 

Unfortunately, while this legislation had significant momentum at the beginning of the session, the Legislature was unable to muster the votes to pass it. Instead, they approved $1.4 million for a new Office of Carbon Policy to further study how an Oregon cap and invest program could work. They are also creating a new legislative Committee on Carbon Reduction with the aim of advancing climate legislation in 2019. Friends of Family Farmers will continue to be engaged in this process to ensure that the voices of Oregon's socially responsible farmers are heard loud and clear. We are part of the solution!

Read a detailed recap from the 2018 Legislative Session in our latest Muckboots in the Capitol blog. 

Oregon Pasture Network Applications are Open!

The Oregon Pasture Network (OPN) is a program of Friends of Family Farmers to support the growth of sustainable, pasture-based livestock production in our state. Farmers and ranchers that join the OPN are committed to raising animals on pasture, treating animals humanely, and protecting the environment.

The benefits of joining the OPN include being in the Oregon Pasture Network Product Guide, networking with like minded producers, educational opportunities to deepen understanding of the art and science of good grazing management, and more. 

We currently have roughly 50 producers around the state participating in the OPN, and we want to keep growing the network. Apply today to join us in 2018


Calendar of Events

March 7 - FoFF Farmer & Rancher Listening Session - Beavercreek/Clackamas County

March 8 - FoFF Farmer & Rancher Listening Session - Gresham/Portland

March 10 - Living on a Few Acres Conference - Redmond

March 11 - FoFF Farmer & Rancher Listening Session en Español - Forest Grove

March 12 - Columbia Gorge Land Access and Farm Succession Workshop - Hood River

March 13 - Pasture and Hay Ground Management Series: Forage Productivity - Eugene

March 14, 21, 28 - Exploring the Small Farm Dream Workshop Series - Redmond

March 17 - Heirloom Apple Orcharding Workshop for Hard Cider - Aurora

March 18 - Home Orchard Society Fruit Propagation Fair - Canby

March 19 - FoFF Farmer & Rancher Listening Session - Terrebonne

March 19 - Produce Safety Grower Training - Medford

March 27 - Pasture and Hay Ground Management Series: Prescription Fertilizing - Eugene

March 29 - FoFF Farmer & Rancher Listening Session - Bend

March 29 - Organic Cover Crop Workshop - Corvallis

April 3 - FoFF Farmer & Rancher Listening Session - Junction City

April 4 - FoFF Farmer & Rancher Listening Session - Eugene

April 5 - Growing Seed Agripreneurs Course - Rogue Valley

April 11 - FoFF Farmer & Rancher Listening Session - Central Point

April 24 - FoFF Farmer & Rancher Listening Session - Banks

Breaking News! ODA Sues Mega-Dairy to Stop Drinking Water Contamination

In an unprecedented action, the Oregon Department of Agriculture (ODA) went to court in late February to shut down operations at Lost Valley Farms, an eastern Oregon mega-dairy approved by ODA just last year. The facility was built to supply milk for Tillamook Cheese. ODA permitted Lost Valley to confine up to 30,000 cows despite strong opposition from FoFF and over 4000 concerned citizens due to potential groundwater contamination risks and other issues.

When ODA approved the operation they said it was "the most protective of surface and groundwater of any Confined Animal Feeding Operation (CAFO) permit issued in the state." But in less than a year, Lost Valley has racked up a steady string of severe manure and wastewater violations that threaten drinking water in the area. They were fined $10,000 by the ODA earlier this year, and after failing to address the issues, the state has now gone to court to stop the facility from continuing to operate until they drain overflowing manure lagoons and address other problems. 

While we are glad that ODA is enforcing the law, it is now clear they never should have granted this facility a pollution permit to begin with. The Salem Statesman Journal was the first to break the story.


Contact Us

Friends of Family Farmers
249 Liberty St NE, Suite 212
Salem, 97301

We bring together farmers and citizens to shape and support socially and environmentally responsible family-scale agriculture in Oregon.

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