MAEAP verified 40 farms in April

posted on May 20, 2014 10:39am

The Michigan Department of Agriculture and Rural Development’s (MDARD) Michigan Agriculture Environmental Assurance Program (MAEAP) is recognizing 40 farms for implementing appropriate pollution prevention practices. The program assists farmers to comply with state and federal environmental regulations and with Right to Farm practices. Technical assistance was provided by local Conservation Districts.

The Michigan Agriculture Environmental Assurance Program recognized:

  • Veld Farms, of Wayland, as a verified farm in the Livestock, Cropping and Farmstead Systems.
  • Veld Home Farm, of Wayland, as a verified farm in the Cropping System.
  • Veld Farms (130th Ave), of Hopkins, as a verified farm in the Farmstead System.
  • Terre Verde Farm, of Otsego, as a verified farm in the Cropping System.
  • Blue Gold Blueberry Farm, LLC, of Grand Junction, as a verified farm in the Farmstead and Cropping Systems.
  • Rambo, Inc. (Sites 1 and 2) of Bridgman, as a verified farm in the Farmstead for Greenhouse and Cropping for Greenhouse Systems as well as the Farmstead System.
  • Brad Love Farm, of Coldwater, as a verified farm in the Cropping System.
  • Stanton Farms, of Sherwood, as a verified farm in the Farmstead and Cropping Systems.
  • Charlevoix Conservation District, of Charlevoix, as a verified farm in the Cropping System.
  • Zeeb Farms, of Bath, as a verified farm in the Cropping System.
  • Seeger Farms, of Bath, as a verified farm in the Farmstead and Cropping Systems.
  • Grayling Fish Hatchery, Harrietta Hills Trout Farm, LLC of Grayling, as a verified farm in the Livestock and Farmstead Systems.
  • Crooked Vine Vineyard & Winery, of Alanson, as a verified farm in the Cropping and Farmstead Systems.
  • Boss Mouse Cheese, of Kinglsey, as a verified farm in the Farmstead System.
  • Keith and Linda Blonde Farms, of Litchfield, as a verified farm in the Cropping, Livestock, and Farmstead Systems.
  • Girdham Farms, of Hillsdale, as a verified farm in the Cropping and Farmstead Systems.
  • Johnson Farms, of Camden, as a verified farm in the Cropping System.
  • James Wardius Farm, of Springport, as a verified farm in the Cropping System.
  • Jem-Lot Dairy, of Adrian, as a verified farm in the Cropping System.
  • Matthews Farm, of Shelby Township, as a verified farm in the Livestock and Farmstead Systems.
  • Reaper Farms, of Armada, as a verified farm in the Livestock, Cropping, and Farmstead Systems.
  • Johnson Farms, of Camden, as a verified farm in the Cropping System.
  • LaBranz Asparagus Farm, of Scottville, as a verified farm in the Farmstead and Cropping Systems.
  • Joel & Sally Lipps Farm, of Scottville, as a verified farm in the Farmstead and Cropping Systems.
  • Tuckers Farm, of Temperance, as a verified farm in the Livestock, Cropping and Farmstead Systems.
  • Ingersoll Farm, of Ida, as a verified farm in the Livestock and Farmstead Systems.
  • Arbre Farms Inc, of Walkerville, as a verified farm in the Farmstead System.
  • Sid and Jill Whitaker, of Hart, as a verified farm in the Farmstead and Cropping Systems.
  • Aerts Farm Inc, of Hart, as a verified farm in the Farmstead and Cropping Systems.
  • Wayne Somers Farm, of Henderson, as a verified farm in the Cropping System.
  • Higgins Farms, of Corunna, as a verified farm in the Farmstead and Cropping Systems.
  • John Schulz Farm, of Unionville, as a verified farm in the Cropping and Farmstead Systems.
  • V & J Farms, LLC, of Deford, as a verified farm in the Cropping System.
  • Kevin Findlay Farm, of Unionville, as a verified farm in the Cropping System.
  • Jonathan Findlay Farm, of Caro, as a verified farm in the Cropping System.
  • Clearwater Farms, of Caro, as a verified farm in the Cropping System.
  • Sweetland Dairy of, Ann Arbor, as a verified farm in the Cropping and Livestock Systems.
  • Mums The Word, of New Boston, as a verified farm in the Cropping and Farmstead Systems.
  • Waltz Green Acres Sod Farm, Inc., of New Boston, as a verified farm in the Cropping System.
  • Harrietta Hills Trout Farm, LLC. of Harrietta, as a verified farm in the Livestock System.

“I am pleased to announce that these farms have taken the steps necessary to become an environmentally verified operation,” said MDARD Director Jamie Clover Adams. “Michigan is leading the way nationwide in effective stewardship practices with the voluntary, incentive-based MAEAP program. This continued effort shows agricultural producers long term commitment to protecting the environment while maintaining economic success.”

MAEAP is a collaborative effort of farmers, MDARD, Michigan Farm Bureau, commodity organizations, universities, conservation districts, conservation and environmental groups and state and federal agencies.  More than 100 local coordinators and technical service providers are available to assist farmers as they move through the MAEAP process toward verification. An average of 5,000 Michigan farmers attend educational programs annually; 10,000 Michigan farms have started the verification process; and over 2,000 farms have been verified to date.

To become MAEAP verified, farmers must complete three comprehensive steps which include attending an educational seminar, conducting a thorough on-farm risk assessment, and developing and implementing an action plan addressing potential environmental risks. MDARD conducts an on‑farm inspection to verify program requirements related to applicable state and federal environmental regulations, Michigan Right to Farm guidelines, and adherence to an action plan. When completed, the producer receives a certificate of environmental assurance. To remain a MAEAP verified farm, inspections must be conducted every three years and action steps must be followed.

In March of 2011, Governor Rick Snyder signed Senate Bill 122 and House Bill 4212, now Public Acts 1 and 2 of 2011, to codify the Michigan Agriculture Environmental Assurance Program into law.

MAEAP is a multi-year program allowing producers to meet personal objectives, while best managing both time and resources. The program encompasses three systems designed to help producers evaluate the environmental risks of their operation. Each system – Livestock, Farmstead, and Cropping – examines a different aspect of a farm, as each has a different environmental impact. By participating in all three systems, producers can comprehensively evaluate their entire farming operation for potential environmental risks.

For more information, visit the MAEAP website at http://www.maeap.org or contact Jan Wilford, MDARD’s MAEAP Program Manager, at (517)284-5608.

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Media Contact: Heather Throne

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