2011 Report Summary
In 2011Kansas SARE helped coordinate the spring PDP meeting in Kansas City, provided assistance for the sustainable ag committee for 2011 NACAA Convention in Overland Park, hosted a week-long Kansas NCR SARE staff site visit, and helped organize a PDP State Coordinator tour in November. Outreach activities within the state included exhibits at 7 conferences/workshops, assistance with 3 grant writing workshops, and presence at numerous tours, workshops and conferences. The State Plan of Work included 3 initiatives: 1) Scaling Up Local Foods; Good Agriculture Practices (GAPS) and 3) Applied Sustainable Agriculture. Partners in the program involved 46 extension, 4 other university, 8 NRCS,14 NGO, and 15 farmers/ranchers.
The Scaling Up Local Foods team agreed after the 2010 regional training that fact/data findings should be top priority. A survey tool was developed and will be used for the first time at the Great Plains Growers Conference in January 2012. Interest in scaling up local foods continues to increase, so this initiative will continue into 2012. Reported outcomes for Kansas SARE PDP were: 69 answered client questions, 133 did individual consultations, 131 developed new contacts and partners, 30 incorporated material into programming, 10 delivered new programming, 21 used in newsletters or other media outlets. Ebert reports: “A beneficial unanticipated outcome from the KS site visit led to multiple contacts from on-campus researchers with interest in NCR-SARE funding opportunities. This has helped create a network of on-campus contacts.”
The Kansas SARE Professional Development Program (PDP) fully supports and seeks to advance the NCR SARE goals to foster site-specific, integrated farming systems; satisfy human food and fiber needs; enhance environmental quality, natural resource conservation and the integration of on-farm and biological resources; enhance the quality of rural life and support owner-operated farms; protect human health and safety; and promote crop, livestock and enterprise diversity and the well-being of animals.
Plan for 2012
Kansas SARE PDP is part of K-State Research and Extension (KSRE) based at the main campus of Kansas State University in Manhattan, Kansas as part of the Kansas Center for Sustainable Agriculture and Alternative Crops (KCSAAC) in the Department of Biological and Agricultural Engineering. Guidance for Kansas SARE PDP is provided by a 12-member advisory committee with oversight by KSRE administration. The primary target audience of professional development programming for 2012 is Extension educators with secondary audiences of KSRE specialists, NRCS, and NGOs.
There are three initiative areas for Kansas, with one being the regional Carbon, Energy, and Climate topic. They also have an initiative on “Alternative crops and sustainable practices” and one on “Applied Sustainable Agriculture Initiatives.” The latter initiative is more of a catchall for older topics being completed, such as local foods and GAPS training, and also includes some livestock and ranching programs.