MAEAP Verifies Twenty-Six Farms in March

posted on April 19, 2013 10:38am

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

    • Fenn Valley Vineyards & Winery as a verified farm in the Farmstead and Cropping Systems.
    • Veld Farms as a verified farm in the Livestock System.
    • Stoney Knoll Dairy as a verified farm in the Cropping System.
    • Mark Hacker Farms as a verified farm in the Farmstead System.
    • Dan Ritter Farms as a verified farm in the Cropping System.
    • Eggert Farm, Inc. as a verified farm in the Cropping System.
    • Don,Merle Koth as a verified farm in the Cropping System.
    • Duane R. McAllister Farm as a verified farm in the Cropping System.
    • Stoutenburg Farm as a verified farm in the Cropping System. 
    • Woods Farm in Antrim County, as a verified farm in the Farmstead System.
    • Miner Farms as a verified farm in the farmstead and Cropping Systems.
    • Trim Pines Farm, Inc. in Genesee County, as a verified farm in the Farmstead, Cropping and Livestock Systems.
    • Saratoga Farms of Litchfield in Hillsdale County, as a verified farm in the Farmstead System.
    • Charles P. Mann Farm in Lapeer County, as a verified farm in the Cropping and Farmstead Systems.
    • Eagle View Farms in Leelanau County, as a verified farm in the Farmstead and Cropping Systems.
    • Mason Farms, Inc. in Lenawee County, as a verified farm in the Cropping System.
    • Klackle Orchards in Montcalm County, as a verified farm in the Cropping System.
    • Hyatt Family Blueberries in Muskegon County, as a verified farm in the Farmstead and Cropping Systems.
    • J. Devins Farm in Roscommon County, as a verified farm in the Cropping System.
    • Tim Papst Professional Horse Training in Saginaw County, as a verified farm in the Farmstead, Livestock and Cropping System.
    • Sprague Farms in Shiawassee County, as a verified farm in the Farmstead and Cropping Systems.
    • J-Land Farm as a verified farm in the Farmstead, Livestock and Cropping Systems.
    • Paramount Enterprises Dairy as a verified farm in the Farmstead System.
    • Alaga Farms in Van Buren County, as a verified farm in the Farmstead and Cropping Systems.
    • Ackerman Brothers Farms as a verified farm in the Cropping System.
    • James Schulz Farm as a verified farm in the Farmstead and Cropping Systems.

 

 “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 more than 1,500 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 517-241-4730.

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Media Contact: Heather Throne

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