The Midwest Organic and Sustainable Education Service (MOSES) held the
second Organic Research Forum as part of the 2010 Organic Farming Conference
Feb. 25-27, in La Crosse, Wisconsin.
The Forum was a great success with over 400 attendees!
This event offered a
unique opportunity for students, scientists and farmer researchers
investigating topics related to organic agriculture, to engage and share
their work with the conference audience through workshops and a poster
Below are the Research Forum workshop descriptions. Powerpoint slides (in pdf form) from each workshop
will be available soon. Contact MOSES if you have questions about the Forum.
Building a Sustainable Agriculture Educational Program at Your Institution
Are you involved in curriculum development around sustainable agriculture at your institution? Do you want to be and don't know where to start? The Sustainable Agriculture Education Association would like to remind you that you don't have to reinvent the wheel! Students, faculty, staff and community stakeholders all have a role in developing the educational programs that will shape the next generation of agricultural professionals. Come join us to learn about effective existing programs and the resources and networks available for building new programs from the ground up. The SAEA's resources include an online database of curricula, directories of student farms and official sustainable agriculture educational programs, national participatory conferences for educators and learners and a lively online discussion group.
Panel Discussion: Building a Research Program in Organic Agriculture:
Strategies and Considerations for Faculty, Staff and Students
Join panelists Kathleen Delate (Iowa State University), Deborah Stinner (Ohio State University), Matthew Grieshop (Michigan State University), Anusuya Rangarajan (Cornell University) and John Biernbaum (Michigan State University), as well as PhD. candidate Allison Jack (Cornell University) for a participatory discussion on how to effectively build a research program centered on organic agriculture. Are you unsure about where to obtain funding, or how to increase the level of support for organic research within your institution? This discussion is focused on strategies pre-tenure faculty, as well as staff and tenured faculty, can use to acquire financial and inter- and intra-departmental support, as well as how to effectively build partnerships with colleagues not currently working in organics. Graduate students will benefit from learning what they can do in their current positions to facilitate successful program building. Other topics that will be covered include accessing land for organic certification and the issues of parallel production, as well as methods for effectively getting results into the hands of growers.
Strategies for Managing the Weed Seedbank
and Encouraging Weed Seed Predation
Combining diverse crop rotations with the encouragement of weed seed predators can significantly affect the number and composition of weed seeds on your farm. Join Adam Davis of the University of Illinois and USDA-ARS and John Masiunas of the University of Illinois for this eye-opening discussion of how to manage your land to reduce the overall weed pressure. [PDF presentation / 55 pages]
Three Years of Raising Hogs in an Organic
Integrating hogs into an organic apple orchard shows promise for reducing pest and disease pressure in organic apple orchards. Join Michigan State University's Matt Grieshop and David Epstein as they discuss their research on the practicality and utility of this old practice.
Strategies for Transitioning to Organic
Transitioning to organic production can pose difficulties for growers used to managing conventionally. University of Illinois' Michelle Wander, Iowa State University's Kathleen Delate, and Ohio State University's Deborah Stinner will discuss the impact of the transition process on soil quality and nutrient availability, insect and disease prevalence, and the soil biological community and overall crop health and productivity.
An Ecological Look at Pest Suppression
in Organic Systems
Plants growing in organic systems may be less susceptible to pests than those grown in conventional systems, while common organic practices may increase the activity of arthropod predators. Join Ohio State University's Larry Phelan and Pennsylvania State University's Mary Barbercheck as they discuss their research about the effects of organic practices on crop pest resistance and increased habitat for insect predators.
Disease Suppressive Soils and Composts:
What does the Science Tell Us?
Cornell University's Allison Jack [PDF presentation / 43 pages] and Oregon State University's Alexandra Stone [PDF presentation / 61 pages] will look at the use of organic amendments and cover crops to suppress diseases in fields and greenhouses. In addition to discussing composts, vermicomposts, and cover crops, this workshop will consider the use of these strategies as part of a whole-farm disease management strategy.
*This event was made possible by a generous
contribution from the Greater Milwaukee Foundation's Ceres Foundation, Inc.
Midwest Organic and Sustainable Education Service (MOSES)