Poster: Adaptation and Resilience on Vegetable and Fruit Farms in the Northeastern US

Project Type: Graduate Student
Funds awarded in 2017: $13,385.00
Projected End Date: 05/31/2019
Grant Recipient: University of Vermont
Region: Northeast
State: Vermont
Graduate Student:
Faculty Advisor:
Dr. V. Ernesto Mendez
University of Vermont
This poster was presented at the 2019 New England Vegetable and Fruit Conference, and the Northeast Specialty Crop Water Symposium. The following is the poster abstract: Projections for climate change in the Northeastern US forecast increasingly severe precipitation and drought patterns which pose heightened risk to agricultural production throughout the region. Our research draws upon the expertise of vegetable and fruit farmers across the northeast to explore how farms are adapting to increasingly extreme weather patterns and what resources they need to support farm resilience to climate change. In the first phase of our research 194 famers participated in a regional survey about adaptation. In the second phase of our research we collaborated with farmers networks to run focus groups, share our preliminary results and ask farmers about what resources they need to support their resilience to climate change. Our research indicates that vegetable and fruit farmers in the northeast are actively adapting to climate change in many ways, predominantly through soil management, infrastructure investments, crop diversification and landscape level water planning. The majority of farmers who participated in our survey reported that although they understand the vulnerability of their farm to climate change, they lack the informational and financial assets to invest in adaptive management. To support their resilience, farmers asked for more on-farm technical assistance and establishment cost-share programs, among many other things. Farmers cited collaborative problem-solving opportunities as one of the most important ways they address emerging challenges like climate change. The results of our research offer important insights for farmers and extension professionals who seek to support agricultural sustainability in the face of climate change.
Conference/Presentation Material, Display
Alissa White, University of Vermont
Joshua Faulkner, University of Vermont
V. Ernesto Mendez, University of Vermont
Target audiences:
Farmers/Ranchers; Educators; Researchers
Ordering info:
Alissa White
[email protected]
University of Vermont
63 Carrigan Drive
Burlington, VT 05405
Any opinions, findings, conclusions, or recommendations expressed in this publication are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the view of the U.S. Department of Agriculture or SARE.