IPM Voice Newsletter                                                                                                                        February 2013

IPM Voice Grower Group Survey

In December 2012, IPM Voice launched a survey to take the pulse of grower groups on the importance of IPM to members. Twenty groups have responded to date, with 100% indicating members rely on IPM as part of their operations. Ninety-five percent indicated IPM was key to crop quality. Saving money, minimizing economic risks and protecting natural resources were the next most important benefits, at 85%, 65% and 60% respectively.

 

The number one concern for the future of IPM was downsizing of Extension staff and funding, cited by 75% of respondents. Lack of coordination between government agencies, growers, Extension, IPM consultants and others was second, at 65%, followed by lack of IPM knowledge among the general public (45%), and lack of political representation for IPM (40%).

 

Advocating for IPM funding and building public awareness of and appreciation for IPM, are core elements of IPM Voice's mission. Let's all work to continue to educate grower groups about IPM Voice's role, and ask for their participation and support to continue this important work. Ask your grower group to join IPM Voice as an organizational member today.

Farm Bill Update 

Last week, Senate Democrats introduced a fiscal package with the intention of avoiding significant across the board spending cuts to agencies and programs between now and September 30 that would occur if sequestration takes effect on March 1.  The Senate package includes $27.5 billion in cuts to agriculture spending over the coming decade, but also includes provisions for 24 of the 37 conservation, specialty crop and energy programs that were left out of the farm bill extension in January.  According to the USDA, if a new fiscal package is not enacted into law by Congress and sequestration takes effect in March, the Natural Resource Conservation Service would have to cut $20 million in technical assistance funds and $109 million in financial assistance to farmers, and agricultural research within USDA would take an agency wide hit resulting in the loss of over $60 million, and more than 100 fewer grants awarded for research.  

Opportunity for IPM in Next Generation Science Standards

The National Research Council, the National Science Teachers Association, the American Association for the Advancement of Science, and Achieve are developing the Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS) that will lay out the core ideas and practices in science that students should master in preparation for college and careers. The development of these standards could provide an ideal opportunity to bring IPM curricula into K-12 classrooms nationwide.

 

Last month, in response to a call for stakeholder input, Dr. Thomas Green, president of the IPM Institute of North America, commented on behalf of the National School IPM Steering Committee. His letter noted, "IPM is an ideal science curriculum topic because of deep connections to biology, ecology, behavior, environmental and human health, sustainability, and IPM's broad applicability and ability to be demonstrated in school settings for structural, landscape, human health and other pests.

 

The next step in this process will be implementation of the NGSS throughout the country. Well-designed IPM curricula are already available through multiple sources, including  Penn State University Extension, the University of Florida, eXtension.org and the Maine Department of Agriculture, Conservation and Forestry. These standards provide a unique opportunity for these curricula and others to be presented to states for inclusion in their schools' K-12 curricula. To facilitate incorporation of IPM curricula, the National School IPM Steering Committee is working to identify key contacts at the national and state level to create awareness of these existing resources, and identify opportunities to collaborate.

It's That Time of Year!

Remember to renew your IPM Voice membership for 2013 by March 22nd, or join as a new member!  Visit http://www.ipmvoice.org/join.htm.

Upcoming IPM-Related Meetings and Conferences

March 3-6, 2013: ESA Southeastern Branch Annual Meeting, Baton Rouge, Louisiana  

March 5, 2013: ESA International Branch Annual Meeting in Pucon, Chile  

March 5, 2013: EPA's Pollinator Summit, Arlington, VA

March 11-15, 2013: Western Society of Weed Science 2013 Annual Meeting, San Diego, CA. More details.

March 14-20, 2013: ESA Eastern Branch Annual Meeting, Lancaster, PA

April 7-10, 2013:  ESA Pacific Branch Annual Meeting, Stateline, Nevada

Mark your calendars: 8th International IPM Symposium, March 24-26, 2015 in Salt Lake City, Utah 

IPM Voice is an independent, non-profit organization advocating for integrated pest management (IPM) that is genuinely progressive and seeks continuous improvement of environmental, social and economic conditions through application of accepted scientific principles.  IPM Voice was formed in 2010 by more than 35 professionals working to expand the benefits IPM has provided to agriculture and communities for more than 40 years.

IPM Voice, Inc. / 4510 Regent Street  Madison, Wisconsin 53705 / 608-232-1410 / www.ipmvoice.org