LA CROSSE, Wis. – Organic producers and service providers can participate in a three-state training opportunity, known as The Organic Agronomy Training Series (OATS) Collaborative, Aug. 14-15 in La Crosse, while also hearing from an Iowa State University Extension and Outreach specialist.
The program will offer a science-based education for agricultural professionals including agronomists, technical service providers, extension staff, agency personnel, educators and farmers – both organic and those interested in transitioning to organic.
“OATS is the first combined effort between Iowa, Wisconsin and Minnesota to target educators or service providers who work with transitioning farmers,” said Kathleen Delate, professor and organic extension specialist in horticulture and agronomy at Iowa State University.
Delate will speak Aug. 14 on “Pest Management in Organic Grain Systems.” The first day also includes classroom workshops on organic certification, crop rotations, nutrient and pest management, as well as markets.
The second day will include a field trip to local organic farms where hands-on training in basic and innovative organic practices, including organic no-till, will be demonstrated.
Presentations will show attendees how to guide farmers through the transition to U.S. Department of Agriculture organic compliance, including weed management, insect and disease management, fertility strategies and designing rotations to benefit both agronomic and economic goals.
Participants can network with other organic-focused professionals and visit a nearby organic operation for experiential learning.
The training is supported by Pipeline Foods, Clif Bar and the Organic Trade Association’s Organic Grains Council, in partnership with Iowa State University, the University of Minnesota, the University of Wisconsin, Albert Lea Seed Co., and the Midwest Organic and Sustainable Education Service (MOSES).
The training will be held at the Radisson Hotel, 200 Second St. South, 200 Harborview Plaza in La Crosse. The cost of the two-day training is $85.
Kathleen Delate can be reached at 515-294-7069, or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Photo: Kathleen Delate, professor and organic extension specialist in horticulture and agronomy at Iowa State University, describes practices to produce organic corn (in background).