MAEAP Verifies Eleven Farms in May

posted on June 14, 2012 3:11pm

The Michigan Department of Agriculture and Rural Development’s (MDARD) Michigan Agriculture Environmental Assurance Program (MAEAP) is recognizing eleven 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:

  • Valley View Farm, of Bangor, as a verified farm in the Farmstead and Cropping Systems.
  • Mann Farms, of Fennville, as a verified farm in the Cropping System. 
  • Pleasant View Dairy, of Jonesville, as a verified farm in the Cropping System.
  • Stoney Creek Farm, of Hastings, as a verified farm in the Farmstead, Cropping and Livestock Systems.
  • Villa-Miller Farms, of Constantine, as a verified farm in the Farmstead and Cropping Systems. 
  • Ron White Farm, of Scotts, as a verified farm in the Cropping System.
  • Myers Farm LLC, of Scotts, as a verified farm in the Livestock System.
  • Matt Skrzypek Farm, of Vicksburg, as a verified farm in the Farmstead System.
  • Willams Farms, of Elsie, as a verified farm in the Farmstead and Cropping Systems.
  • N&L Farms, of Tipton, as a verified farm in the Cropping System.
  • Rochowiak Farms, of Milan, as a verified farm in the Cropping System.

“Interest in Michigan’s voluntary, proactive program for assuring effective land stewardship practices on farms is growing. I applaud these farms for their proactive environmental steps to assure effective land stewardship practices and becoming MAEAP verified,” said MDARD Director Keith Creagh. “Michigan’s verified farms are a symbol of the commitment to our state’s long-term agriculture economic success and environmental safeguarding."

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 more than 1,100 farms have be`en 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 517-241-4730.

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Media Contact: Heather Throne

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