Though disruption and distance may be the enduring themes of these times, our work at the Center for Sustainable Agriculture continues. We are physically separated, but still united around work that supports farms, farmers, communities and the land and water that sustains us all.
Alongside the existing research and projects with which we began the year, we have been fortunate enough to receive funding for two new projects that feel especially promising right now - ones that are exploring resiliency in particularly interconnected ways. As we continue to reflect on our core values and beliefs, we are honored to be able to engage in - and tell the story of - work that has the capacity to help more farms to thrive.
Thanks to a grant from the Dean's Office of the UVM College of Agriculture and Life Sciences (CALS), a team that includes Center personnel, Travis Reynolds from Community Development & Applied Economics (CDAE), and Agritourism program director Lisa Chase, has gathered to investigate what connections, relationships and assets were factors in the farms' experiences during the COVID-19 crisis.
In this short video Suzy Hodgson, who is the lead on the project, explains the scope and aims of the work the team will be engaging in the next year.
Wool Pellet Project
A grant from Northeast SARE is allowing us to begin the next phase of work on the Wool Pellet Project that uses a waste product (raw wool0 from sheep farmers to create a soil amendment for vegetable growers.
With this funding, the team is learning just what happens to the soil and (tomato and spinach) plants treated with pelletized raw wool. The implications for plant growth, soil health and water quality are promising based on the first phase of the research. Learn a bit more in this recent video with Kimberly Hagen explaining the project.