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Green Lands, Blue Waters Finding the Win-Win: Incorporating Sustainable Agriculture Approaches Helene Murray Minnesota Institute for Sustainable Agriculture University of Minnesota – Twin Cities George Boody Land Stewardship Project White Bear Lake, Minnesota


Green Lands, Blue Waters Multiple Benefits of Agriculture Initiative - Watershed Study www.landstewardshipproject.org/mba/Multifunc_Jan05_BioSc.pdf Chippewa River


Future Scenarios Continuation of Present Trends Increased field size Focus on annual crop production


Future Scenarios Continuation of Present Trends Adoption of Best Management Practices BMPs – conservation tillage, recommended levels of nutrient application, 100-foot buffers


Future Scenarios Continuation of Present Trends Adoption of Best Management Practices BMPs + Agricultural Diversification + Wetlands 5 year crop rotation including corn, soybeans, small grains, hay and more animals on the land through more rotational grazing


Future Scenarios D. Restoring Managed Year-round Vegetative Cover Cover crops, 300’ buffers, grass on higher slopes for energy, seed, increased rotational grazing Continuation of Present Trends Adoption of Best Management Practices BMPs + Agricultural Diversification + Wetlands


Predict in-stream environmental benefits, including Impacts on fish Potential wildlife effects and greenhouse gases were calculated Social scientists analyzed results to describe impacts on communities Economists estimated farm economic impacts, federal farm payments and environmental benefits ADAPT Model


Increased Conservation Percent Change from Baseline Sediment N P Chippewa River Current trends BMPs Expanded Diversity Year Round Cover 45,000 acres 81% cultivated 7% pasture


Pride of the Prairie Regional Sustainable Food System An initiative to develop a local food system that will help protect the environment, reduce energy consumption and circulate dollars in the community. Create awareness & community support for locally grown foods by developing and enhancing existent educational and outreach opportunities Work with the U of MN-Morris and Sodexho, to use locally grown foods on campus Work with regional food-producing farmers to provide products for residents, institutions and retailers in the region Continue to assess and develop the necessary infrastructure to channel local food from production to consumption Exchange what is learned with other Buy Local campaigns across the state and nation. Evaluate our progress Goals


Green Lands, Blue Waters


Pride of the Prairie Northern area of the Corn Belt Cultural rebirth in progress in the area Farmers direct marketing, developing CSAs, selling to niche markets and producing with stewardship practices Built on base of collaborative research efforts among U of M-Morris, NGOs, WCROC, MISA, and agencies on diversified farming systems Groups working together made this a priority


Pride of the Prairie Polled regional restaurants and institutions to determine food buying preferences Need for coops or alliances to get sufficient quantity and frequency of products from smaller farms “Enterprise Facilitation” being developed to foster entrepreneurial business development (through Sirolli Institute, city councils, other partners)


Cedar Summit Farm Dave’s grandfather purchased land in 1926 Dave and Florence returned to farm in 1969 Overview


In 1974 discontinued the use of pesticides By late 1980’s they became dissatisfied with the direction their farm was headed: static debt load; equipment costs; herd turn over costs Cedar Summit Farm


Intrigued with idea of improving herd health by allowing them to harvest their own feed seven months/year Set goal to convert all of their farm to permanent pasture to reduce erosion, improve water quality, mineral cycling Cedar Summit Farm


Cedar Summit Farm


Their adult children expressed a desire to be part of the farm Dave and Florence wanted to add jobs without increasing herd size Explored feasibility of adding an on-farm processing plant to add value to their milk, increase profitability, and support more family members financially Cedar Summit Farm


Created a board of advisors: local banker, farm business management consultant, meat processor clients and friends Developed a business plan Mission Statement: “to provide fresh, wholesome meat and dairy products to our growing community; to become the neighborhood farm.” Cedar Summit Farm


Today farm is 450 acres, 160 animals On-farm store with a diverse, high quality product line including milk, yogurt, cream, sour cream, ice cream, hard cheeses, beef, pork and heritage turkeys. Products are sold at over 60 grocery stores, farmers markets, and co-ops Farm supports 4 families Cedar Summit Farm


Helene Murray hmurray@umn.edu 612-625-0220 George Boody gboody@landstewardshipproject.org 651-653-0618 www.greenlandsbluewaters.org Green Lands, Blue Waters

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