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MOA's 14th Annual Conference and Member Meeting
This year's theme is: The Heartbeat of Organics: Stimulating the Pulse of our Producers, Consumers and Policymakers
December 1-3, 2016, Flathead Valley Community College, Kalispell, MT



7:00 am - 8:00 am Registration and Breakfast
(Lower Level Arts and Technology Building/AT 139)

8:00 am - 12:00 pm: ORGANIC UNIVERSITY
Pre-registration is required.
The Basics of Organic Production; facilitated by organic industry experts, including Jess Alger, Alger Ranch; Tammy Howard, National Center for Appropriate Technology; and Sean Mulla, Montana Department of Ag (MTDA) (AT 144A/B)

8:00 am - 12:00 pm: GAP TRAINING
Pre-registration is required.
Fresh produce farmers will have assistance developing their on-farm food safety plans at this workshop and will participate in an on-farm audit. Facilitated by Jonda Crosby, International Organic Inspectors Association and Nancy Matheson, Organic Consultant (AT 139)

9:45 am - 10:00 am Coffee Break (Lower Level Arts and Technology Building)

12:00 pm - 1:15 pm: Lunch (AT 139)

1:15-1:30 pm Load Vehicles for Tours (meet outside the front doors of the Arts and Technology Building)

1:30 pm - 5:00 pm: MOA ORGANIC TOURS
Pre-registration is required and space is limited.
Tour 1: Browns Meadow Farm/Montana Better Beef Join owner/operator Pete Wade at his certified organic grass fed beef operation, Montana Better Beef, just west of Kalispell. Dr. Joseph Snyder, DVM, will join the tour to provide input and answer questions about livestock health.

Tour 2: Terrapin Farm
Join Organic Seed Alliance’s Steve Peters and Terrapin Farm owner Judy Owsowitz for a hands-on demonstration of seed extraction and cleaning techniques. Learn about a great diversity of plant varieties and season extension methods. We will tour the hoop-houses, high tunnel, earth-bermed greenhouse, root cellar and other infrastructure.

5:15 pm – 6:30 pm: MOA/National Young Farmer’s Coalition Social Hour (Lower Level Arts and Technology Building)
Everyone is encouraged to attend this social, which will be co-hosted by the NYFC. The hour will feature heavy hors d’oeuvres, a no host bar, and a pre-conference welcome from the MOA Board.

6:30 pm - 8:30 pm: Turn Here Sweet Corn:
Atina Diffley’s compelling account of her life as a Minnesota organic farmer, presented as a one-woman play, starring actress Patty Thiel. Free and open to the public (AT 139)



7:00 am – 8:00 am: Registration and Breakfast
(Lower Level Arts and Technology Building/AT 139)

8:00 am – 8:15 am: Welcome: Doug Crabtree, MOA Board Chairman, Vilicus Farms (AT 139)

8:15 am – 9:15 am: Organic Policy Update: Nate Brown, Almatheia Dairy, will facilitate an update on the new GMO labeling law, organic grain imports, and other policies affecting organic farmers in Montana. With Nate Lewis, Organic Trade Association and Barry Flamm, Former NOSB Board Chairman (AT 139)

9:15 am - 9:30 am: Break and Vendor Appreciation
(Lower Level Arts and Technology Building)

9:30 am – 10:45 am: CONCURRENT SESSIONS
Session 1: Vaccinology : The Theory, Use and Misuse of Vaccines and Vaccination
: Dr. Joseph Snyder, DVM (AT 139)
Session 2: Growing Your Organic Business – Training, Technical Assistance and Funding Opportunities: Angie Nelson, MTDA, and Joe Willauer, Food and Agriculture Development Center Network (AT 144A/B)

11:00 am – 12:00 pm: Organic Agriculture Can Play a Significant Role in Feeding the World: Keynote Speaker Dr. John Reganold, Washington State University (WSU) (AT 139)

12:00 pm – 1:00 pm: Lunch (AT 139)

1:00 pm - 1:30 pm: Student Poster Presentations and Vendor Appreciation (AT 139)

1:00 pm – 4:00 pm: KIDS’ UNIVERSITY
Pre-registration is required. Runs concurrently with Conference. Activities include sorting and identifying over 40 pulses; a hands-on cooking lesson with taste testing; and lessons from The Lentil Underground: Learning Through Storytelling about Montana’s Rich History With Pulses. Facilitated by Caitlin Coghlan and Cryse Heiner, FoodCorps (BC 133/142)

1:30 pm – 2:30 pm: CONCURRENT SESSIONS
Session 1: Cool-season Vegetables under Plastic: What We’ve Learned from Mobile High Tunnels:
Dr. Mac Burgess, Sustainable Bioenergy and Food Systems, MT State University (MSU) (AT 144A/B)
Session 2: My Journey in Organic Farming Research: Where I’ve Come From and Where I am Headed: Dr. Patrick Carr, Central Ag Research Center, MSU (AT 139)

2:30 -2:45 pm: Break and Vendor Appreciation

2:45 pm – 3:45 pm: CONCURRENT SESSIONS
Session 1: Growing Montana Farms, One Beer at a Time: Joe Byers, Director FVCC Brewing Science; Tom Britz, CEO Glacier Hops Ranch; Matthias Haaben, Gambrinus Malting; Brian Smith and Tim Chisman, Blackfoot River Brewing (AT 139)
Session 2: Farmers and Wildlife: Strategies and Opportunities for Producers: Tim Manley, Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks (AT 144A/B)

3:45 pm - 4:00 pm Break and Vendor Appreciation

4:00 pm – 5:00 pm: Plenary Session: Nuggets of Knowledge: An open forum to share experiences on the farm and find out about the successes, challenges, and innovations of other organic farmers in the community, facilitated by Jonda Crosby (AT 139)

5:00 pm – 6:30 pm: Social and Reception
(Lower Level Arts and Technology Building)

6:30 pm – 7:30 pm: Dinner (AT 139)

7:30 pm – 9:30 pm: Presentation of MOA Annual Awards, Live Auction and Music from the Montana Tropical Marimba Ensemble (AT 139)



7:30 am – 8:00 am: Breakfast (AT 139)

8:00 am – 8:15 am: Announcements and Updates (AT 139)

8:15 am – 9:30 am: CONCURRENT SESSIONS
Session 1: Accessing Montana’s Resources and Financing Opportunities with Farm Link Montana:
Annie Heuscher, Community Food and Agriculture Coalition (AT 208)
Session 2: Impacts and Management of Field Bindweed in Organic Systems: Dr. Zach Miller, Western Ag Research Center, MSU and Ruminating in Organic Small Grain Systems: Lessons from Grazing Organic Crops for Cover Crop and Weed Termination: Dr. Fabian Menalled, Extension Professor and Cropland Weed Specialist, MSU (AT 139)
Session 3: Montana’s Seed Movement is Strong and Growing: Kiki Hubbard, Organic Seed Alliance and Karl Sutton, Triple Divide Organic Seeds (AT 144A/B)

9:30 am – 9:45 am: Break and Vendor Appreciation

9:45 am - 10:45 am: CONCURRENT SESSIONS
Session 1: How Important is Soil Health?
Dr. John Reganold, WSU (AT 139)
Session 2: Vaccinology: The Theory, Use and Misuse of Vaccines and Vaccination: Dr. Joseph Snyder, DVM (AT 144A/B)
Session 3: Insuring Your Organic Crops: Shelly Rolando, USDA Farm Service Agency (AT 208)

11:00 am – 11:30 am: Organic Advisory Education Council Update: Ole Norgaard, OAEC and North Frontier Farms (AT 139)

11:30 am – 12:15 pm: MOA Business Meeting (AT 139)

12:15 pm – 12:30 pm: MOA Board Elections (AT 139)

12:30 pm – 1:30 pm: Lunch (AT 139)

1:30 pm – 2:30 pm: CONCURRENT SESSIONS
Session 1: Evaluating Crop Insurance for Organic and Specialty Crop Operations:
Dr. Eric Belasco, Department of Agricultural Economics and Economics, MSU, and Nicole Cook, Risk Management Agency (AT 144A/B)
Session 2: Fitting Pulse Crops into Your Rotation: David Oien and Jim Barngrover, Timeless Natural Foods; and Ty O’Connor, O’Connor Crops and Cattle (AT 139)

2:35 pm – 3:15 pm: Closing Keynote: Keeping the Montana Organic Heartbeat Strong: Bob Quinn, Kamut International (AT 139)

3:15 pm - 3:30 pm: Closing Remarks (AT 139)

Agenda is subject to change. Updated 11/17/16

Download the Conference registration form here. You can also pay online here.

Download the Sponsor Vendor sign up form here.

If you’d like more information or would like to volunteer, call Patti Gregerson at (406) 471-3452 or email her here.

If you’d like more information or would like to sign up as a vendor, advertiser or sponsor, call Susan Waters at (406) 274-4869 or email her here.

©2016 Montana Organic Association