2013-08-15 / Local & State

Maddensville Food Hub Featured In New Publication


Tuscarora Organic Growers, a member-owned food hub cooperative located in Maddensville, Pa., is featured as a case study in the newly released ATTRA publication Food Hubs: A Producer Guide, written by Andy Pressman and Chris Lent. Pressman and Lent are both National Center For Appropriate Technology agriculture specialists in Forty Fort, Pa., NCAT’s northeastern regional office.

The publication focuses on providing small- and mediumsized farms with information and resources to show how food hubs can provide new marketing outlets. Food hubs work to increase access to wholesale markets through aggregation and distribution.

Tuscarora Organic Growers began in 1988 when three organic farmers in south-central Pennsylvania had the idea to organize their production and marketing efforts in order to better supply customers in Washington, D.C.

“The idea was sparked by the realization of how inefficient it was for smaller producers to sell to wholesalers,” explains Jim Crawford, board president and CEO of Tuscarora Organic Growers and one of the initial seven growers. In 2012, at least half of TOG’s close to $3 million in annual sales was to restaurants.

Food Hubs: A Producer Guide is available for free download or as a paper publication for a small handling fee at www.attra. ncat.org .

ATTRA – National Sustainable Agriculture Information Service – was developed and is maintained through a cooperative agreement with the USDA’s Rural Business- Cooperative Service by the National Center for Appropriate Technology, a nonprofit organization headquartered in Butte, Mont.

ATTRA has been the nation’s leading resource for information on sustainable agriculture since 1987, covering a wide range of topics, including reducing pesticide use on cropland, promoting food safety in sustainable production systems, reducing farm energy use and costs, enriching soils with the use of cover crops, and providing technical assistance in the growing areas of local farmers markets and urban gardening.

In addition to hundreds of sustainable agriculture publications, ATTRA’s other popular offerings include a free sustainable-agriculture telephone helpline and the “Ask an Ag Expert” feature on the home page. It has an archive of webinars and videos generated by NCAT and partnering organizations.

ATTRA also maintains numerous popular databases, including sustainable-agriculture internships and apprenticeships, and is a source for the day’s agriculture news, among other features.

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