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California Naturalist program introduced

ANR has developed a new program to create a committed corps of naturalists and citizen scientists trained and ready to take an active role in natural resource conservation, education and restoration. The California Naturalist provides training using a flexible science curriculum, hands-on learning, communication training, and community service to engage adults in interactive learning and provides them with scientific literacy and critical thinking skills.

Science literacy is very low in California, impacting our ability to remain competitive with other states and nations in a global economy that relies on science, engineering and technology. To ensure the sustainability of natural resources in California, we need citizens who participate in natural resource conservation, understand the importance of land-use decisions and climate-change resilience, value biodiversity, understand the limitations of our water and energy resources, and value the role that science and UC play in sustaining our natural ecosystems. These topics along with the fundamental scientific underpinning of natural resource management are the focus of ANR’s California Naturalist program.

The California Naturalist program is designed to be implemented through partnerships with local sponsors. These organizations should have a need for volunteers to actively participate in resource conservation, education/interpretation, and /or participatory science. Organizations can collaborate with UCCE and AES academics in their area or coordinate directly with the program by applying to be a local sponsor through the California Naturalist website.

The Wildlife Conservation Board and the Renewable Resources Extension Act are funding development of the program.

The program got off to a great start last fall in Sonoma County. Through collaboration with Pepperwood Preserve and Santa Rosa Junior College, 45 people participated in the program.

How can UC staff and academics get involved?

  • Collaborate with a local partner and implement the training
  • Help develop regional modules for the handbook
  • Write a short piece on your area of expertise to be included in the handbook, highlighting the expertise of UCCE
  • Sign up your research project to involve citizen scientists
  • Sign up as a guest speaker

For more information, please visit http://ucanr.org/sites/UCCNP or contact Julie Fetherston, UCCE advisor, at jcfetherston@ucdavis.edu or Adina Merenlender, UCCE specialist and associate adjunct professor at adinam@berkeley.edu.

Posted on Monday, July 19, 2010 at 11:28 AM

ANR launches new Food Blog May 3

A blog providing a steady stream of current information about the creation and consumption of food has been launched by the University of California at http://ucanr.org/food. The blog is also available in Spanish at http://ucanr.org/alimentos.

The Food Blog is produced by a team of more than three dozen professional writers who are employed in a wide range of departments and programs affiliated with the UC Division of Agriculture and Natural Resources (ANR). The writers are connected with UC Cooperative Extension, UC Davis, UC Riverside and UC Office of the President. The blog reports food-related information generated by UC programs spanning the state, where advisors and specialists conduct research and deliver results directly to people who produce food.  Information also comes from UC academics who study nutrition and educate the public about eating for better health.

Topics addressed in the blog include nutrition, gardening for food, food safety, obesity, pesticide-residue issues, local food, farmers markets, slow food, home food handling, organic food, food production, food policy and more.  It is all geared to the general public.

“Safe, affordable and nutritious food is a necessity for all Californians,” said Bob Sams, director of ANR Communications Services. “UC has long been dedicated to meeting that need. With more than 100 years of service to California, we have a treasure trove of food knowledge to share with the residents of the state.”

The Food Blog is updated three times weekly. All information is archived and fully searchable.  Readers may use the comment feature in the blog to post inquiries and provide input on food-related topics. In addition, “share” icons on each post make it easy for readers to share the information with friends in their social networks.

For more information or to become a regular contributor, e-mail jewarnert@ucdavis.edu.

Posted on Monday, May 3, 2010 at 9:30 AM
Tags: food (3), news (1)

Precision ag conference set for July 14 in Davis

"Precision Agriculture in California - A Practical Workshop on Current and Potential Uses" will be held on July 14 at the UC Davis Conference Center.

Speakers will present and discuss site-specific management concepts and applied research to show participants how to identify and manage within-field variability to improve crop management. Soils and crop management professionals, including UCCE farm advisors and specialists, pest control advisers, certified crop advisers, and others are invited to attend.

 

For program details and registration, go to http://ucanr.org/sites/paica/.

Posted on Friday, July 2, 2010 at 3:34 PM

Wine market outlook to be discussed June 25

Join other wine lovers at "Outlook and Issues for the World Wine Market" on June 25. The symposium, hosted by the Agricultural Issues Center and the Robert Mondavi Institute for Wine and Food Science, will be held from 3 p.m. to 6 p.m. at the UC Davis Conference Center.

Experts from the United States, Europe and Australia will discuss how current and emerging issues will shape world wine markets over the coming decades. Speakers will explore recurrent booms and busts as well as longer-term directions. After the presentations, a panel of U.S. wine industry leaders will open a public discussion with their comments. The formal symposium sessions will be followed by a hosted reception at the Conference Center.

The fee for UC Davis employees and students is $50. To register, go to http://conferences.ucdavis.edu/confreg/?confid=478.
Posted on Saturday, June 19, 2010 at 9:27 AM

Linking agriculture, food & nutrition

UC Davis will host the National Agricultural Biotechnology Council’s conference “Promoting Health by Linking Agriculture, Food and Nutrition,” on June 16-18.

With health care consuming so much of the developed world’s resources, there is a critical need to understand how diet, nutrition, and the underlying agricultural production systems impact human health. The NABC’s 22nd conference will address the science linking agriculture, food, and nutrition to health with the goal of informing both research priorities and government policies that seek to improve human livelihoods.

To learn more about the program or to register, go to http://nabc.ucdavis.edu.

NABC was formed by the Boyce Thompson Institute in collaboration with Cornell University, Iowa State University and UC Davis in 1988.

Posted on Tuesday, May 18, 2010 at 1:42 PM
Tags: agriculture (1), food (3), nutrition (2)

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