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MAEAP Verifies 27 Farms in January 2018

Posted on 2018-2-28EST3:30PM

The Michigan Department of Agriculture and Rural Development’s (MDARD) Michigan Agriculture Environmental Assurance Program (MAEAP) is recognizing 27 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:

  • Dandelion Knoll Farm, LLC, of Manchester, as a verified farm in Farmstead and Livstock Systems
  • Saginaw Valley Seedcorn Producers, LLC (Previously Ed Mantey & Sons Inc.), of Fairgrove, as a verified farm in Farmstead and Cropping Systems
  • Saginaw Valley Seedcorn Producers, LLC (Previously Ed Mantey & Sons Inc. - Mantey Brothers), of Fairgrove, as a verified farm in Farmstead System
  • Selter Farm, of Ypsilanti, as a verified farm in Cropping Systems
  • Chateau Chantal, of Traverse City, as a verified farm in Cropping and Farmstead Systems
  • Dan Ritter Farms, of Elkton, as a verified farm in Cropping and Farmstead Systems
  •  Gary Eggert Farm, of Harbor Beach, as a verified farm in Cropping System
  • Girton Farms, LLC, of Sturgis, as a verified farm in Cropping and Livestock Systems
  • Branch Area Career Center, of Coldwater, as a verified farm in Cropping System
  •  Grand Traverse Regional Land Conservancy - Maple Bay Farm, of Williamsburg, as a verified farm in Farmstead and Cropping Systems
  • R & T Dunham Farms, of Caro, as a verified farm in Cropping and Farmstead Systems
  • Ortner Farms, Inc., of Reese, as a verified farm in Farmstead and Cropping Systems
  • Ortner Farms, Inc. - Main Farm, of Reese, as a verified farm in Cropping and Farmstead Systems
  • Randy Dunham Farm, of Caro, as a verified farm in Cropping and Farmstead Systems
  • Ellis Farms, LLC, of Grand Junction, as a verified farm in Farmstead System
  • John Gernaat & Son Greenhouses, of Kalamazoo, as a verified farm in Cropping(Greenhouse) and Farmstead(Greenhouse) Systems
  • Phil Gernaat & Sons Greenhouse, of Kalamazoo, as a verified farm in Cropping(Greenhouse) and Farmstead(Greenhouse) Systems
  • Joe Woodruff Farm, of St. Johns, as a verified farm in Cropping System
  • Designs by Nature, LLC, of Laingsburg, as a verified farm in Cropping(Greenhouse) and Farmstead(Greenhouse) Systems
  • Shady Lodge Farm LLC, of Lansing, as a verified farm in Cropping and Farmstead Systems
  • Greendorr Greenhouses, of Dorr, as a verified farm in Cropping(Greenhouse) and Farmstead(Greenhouse) Systems
  • David Motz Farm, of St. Johns, as a verified farm in Cropping System
  • Tagsold Homestead, of Riga, as a verified farm in Cropping System
  • Bay Mills Maple, of Brimley, as a verified farm in Farmstead, Cropping and Livestock Systems 
  • Brandt Family Farms, of Hillman, as a verified farm in Forest, Wetlands, Habitat System
  • Gary Sheldon Farms, of Blissfield, as a verified farm in Cropping System

“By taking the steps necessary to become an environmentally verified operation, these 27 farms have contributed to the assurance of sustainable farming practices,” said MDARD Director Jamie Clover Adams. “Michigan is leading the national agriculture community in effective stewardship practices with the voluntary, incentive-based MAEAP program. The continued success of the program demonstrates that environmental sustainability and economic development are not mutually exclusive.”

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 4,000 verifications 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 five 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 four systems designed to help producers evaluate the environmental risks of their operation. Each system – Livestock, Farmstead, Cropping, and Forest, Wetlands and Habitat – examines a different aspect of a farm, as each has a different environmental impact. By participating in all four 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 Joe Kelpinski, MDARD’s MAEAP Program Manager, at (517)284-5608.