Annual Pesticide Investigations Report & Farm To School Grants
I'm Lacy Gray with Washington Ag Today.
In fiscal year 2013 the WSDA's Pesticide Management Division investigated 157 complaints regarding violations of the state's pesticide laws. Breakdown of the complaints showed that 72 were of pesticide drift involving mostly ground application of herbicides with 35 of those involving possible human exposure. Twenty-five percent of all the complaints involved agricultural applications. Ninety-eight of the investigated complaints resulted in some type of enforcement action, although 80% of the cases were given low severity ratings - indicating no health symptoms or environmental damage.
Three different grants will be available for fiscal year 2015 for USDA's Farm to School Grant Program. Planning grants are intended for schools just getting started on farm to school activities. Implementation grants are available for schools seeking to help scale or expand existing efforts. Additionally, eligible non-profit entities, Indian tribal organizations, state and local agencies, and agriculture producers or groups of producers may apply for Support Service grants in order to to further develop existing farm to school initiatives and to provide broad reaching support services to farm to school initiatives. Ag Secretary Vilsack talks about the USDA's Farm To School Program.
VILSACK: We know that there is a tremendous demand in schools for locally produced product - over $355 million in sales last year. In the last school year where we've had information we anticipate and expect that this is only going to grow based on a survey recently done that shows literally thousands of schools interested in this opportunity.
Proposals are due at 11:59 p.m. Eastern Time, April 30, 2014.
That's Washington Ag Today.
I'm Lacy Gray on the Ag Information Network.