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The Golden Plains Area Extension Program is a joint effort of the counties in Colorado's Northeastern Plains.

The Golden Plains Area Extension Program is a joint effort of the counties in Colorado's Northeastern Plains to provide citizens with valued Extension resources.

Agricultural & Foods Tour to Chile with CSU Extension

The Pueblo County Extension office is currently planning an agricultural and foods tour of Chile for members of the ag community. The tour will have visits to numerous agricultural operations throughout Chile and give tour participants the opportunity to learn about production techniques and marketing strategies that are currently used in Chile. Additionally, the group will learn about Chilean foods and have the opportunity to experience the Chilean culture. The trip is being set up in two parts, with all participants leaving the United States on February 1, 2020 and traveling the first part of the trip that visits northern and central Chile. Those wanting to return after the first segment of the trip would be back in the United States on February 10, 2020. Tour participants wanting to do an additional five days will travel to the Patagonia region of Chile and return to the United States on February 14, 2020.

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Industrial Hemp Production: A Risk Assessment

The last several years have been very challenging for Colorado farmers and ranchers as commodity prices continue to be weak. Cash market prices that just a few years ago might have offered a small profit will not cover the cost of production today. Many agricultural producers are looking for more profitable alternatives to traditional crop and livestock enterprises. One such alternative that many farmers are considering is industrial hemp. Industrial hemp shares the same botanical name as marijuana (Cannabis sativa). The major difference between industrial hemp and marijuana is the Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) content. THC is the psychoactive ingredient in marijuana that produces the “high.” According to 2018 Farm Bill, industrial hemp must contain less than 0.3% THC on a dry weight basis. In order to make a sound decision regarding the production of hemp, growers must evaluate the risks associated with the crop. That risk assessment should include a thorough review of the five areas of risk in agriculture. Those five areas include price, production, legal, financial, and human risk.

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Food Safety Training for Colorado Cottage Food Producers

Are you interested in bringing your home-made food products to market? Thanks to the Colorado Cottage Foods Act, that is feasible. However, specific requirements must be met. To learn more, plan to attend the Cottage Food Safety Training for Colorado Cottage Food Producers on Saturday, October 5, 2019 from 9:00 a.m.- 12:30 p.m. at the WRAC, 700 Main Street in Wray. This course offered by Colorado State University Extension will provide food safety training required by the Colorado Cottage Food Act. Extension Agents, Gisele Jefferson and Joy Akey, will present topics related to the most current Cottage Foods Act, qualifying foods, ingredient labeling requirements, as well as basic food safety and guidelines for operating a small home based cottage food business from a home kitchen. This intense 3 1/2 hour food safety training provides a 3-year certification and meets the food safety training requirement for Colorado Cottage Foods Act established and supported by the Colorado State Department of Health & Environment. Registration fee is $30.00, a reduced rate due to sponsorship by the WRAC. Pre-registration is due by October 1. Register by contacting the Yuma County Extension Office at 970-332-4151.

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