Marianas Variety

Saturday, July 26, 2014-5:03:39P.M.

Last updateFri, 25 Jul 2014 4pm

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USDA-NRCS to reach out to farmers

THE U.S. Department of Agriculture-Natural Resources Conservation Service will conduct an outreach to farmers, particularly the Chinese.

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Kendal Hicks
USDA-NRCS senior conservationist Kendal Hicks said: “We are in the process of working with a Chinese interpreter to hopefully arrange an outreach event in the near future with the Chinese farmers on Saipan.”

Hicks at the same time praised the efforts of Arctic Circle which aims to revive local agriculture by exporting produce to Guam.

“We hope to have a close working relationship with Tony Pellegrino and his farmer friends as the agriculture market expands through his efforts,” Hicks said.

He added that their office likewise supports the Sabalu Farmer’s Market “as best we can.”

Hicks said USDA has awarded the CNMI Department of Lands and Natural Resources $95,701.78 to fund four projects.

This grant will allow DLNR and Northern Marianas College to establish gardens at 10 elementary schools and teach students the foundations and techniques of field planting and harvesting.

It also calls for a partnership with NMC and the Division and Environmental Quality in testing locally grown produce for chemical residue.

The grant likewise aims at producing a higher yield and higher quality of crops with little land required through the use of hydroponics system.

For more information, visit the USDA-NRCS office on Beach Road, right next to Naked Fish or call 233-3415.