Louisiana State University Training Grant- MSP22

Final report for SLA22-001

Project Type: PDP State Program
Funds awarded in 2022: $11,000.00
Projected End Date: 06/30/2023
Grant Recipient: Louisiana State University
Region: Southern
State: Louisiana
State Coordinator:
Dr. Carl Motsenbocker
Louisiana State University Agricultural Center
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Project Information


The Louisiana State University Agricultural Center (LSUAC) will implement programs that enhance the capabilities of Louisiana's agricultural professionals in the area of sustainable agriculture. For the 2022 to 2023 grant period, the following topics have been proposed: sustainable postharvest training, sustainable pest management training, sustainable urban farm tour in New Orleans, LA, and travel to attend the 2023 Georgia Organics Conference & Expo. Extension personnel and other agricultural professionals are strongly encouraged to attend and participate in the training events as well as travel to the conference. Information delivery systems to be utilized by LSUAC will be trainings, workshops, conferences, networking sessions, farm tours / field days, and hands-on demonstrations. Handouts, resource manuals, SARE publications and informational bulletins will also be used. The Louisiana SARE Advisory Board will meet twice annually for programmatic planning and evaluation. The program assistant (halt-time), funded by this project, will be responsible for maintaining the state SARE website (http://www.southernsare.org/SARE-in-Your- State/Louisiana) and Facebook page (https://www.facebook.com/LouisianaSARE/).
The other duties for this position include coordination of state workshops and field days, travel awards and arrangements, promotion of SARE resources and grant opportunities, promotion of related sustainable agriculture resources, events, and opportunities across the state, management and reporting of the PDP organization of advisory board, and collaboration with advisory board members' programs when applicable.

Project Objectives:

For the 2022 to 2023 grant period, the following objectives have been set:

• Plan, organize, and implement trainings or workshops on sustainable agriculture topics for extension personnel and agricultural professionals.
• Maintain the state SARE website with sustainable agriculture materials and resources and links to related state organizations.
• Conduct bi-annual state advisory board meetings with the purpose of revising and modifying the strategic plan.
• Identify annual training objectives with the input from the Louisiana SARE Advisory Board.
• Encourage extension personnel and agricultural professionals to continue to attend sustainable agriculture trainings, meetings, and conferences.
• Continue participation in trainings, workshops, meetings, farm tours / field days, and conferences that highlight sustainable agriculture practices.
• Promote the SARE program results, resources, and grant opportunities in the state of Louisiana.


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Educational approach:

The Louisiana SARE goal to is to provide in-person trainings and scholarships for county agents and other agricultural professionals who work directly with farmers in order to receive training they can use to assist and work with producers and their communities in sustainable agriculture.  

Our educational approach for our sustainable agriculture extension programming for Louisiana has two components:
1. To provide in-person trainings where the target audience consists of extension agents, mentor farmers, producers’ associations, local, regional, state and non-profit organizations, and others that work directly with growers.

2. To facilitate participation by extension agents, nongovernmental organizations, growers and industry representatives, and representatives of non-profit, local, regional and state organizations in on-farm and on-station research, grower assessments of demonstration and research trials, workshops, and on-farm and on-station field days either in state or in the southern region.  

Education & Outreach Initiatives

Sustainable Agriculture Training & Professional Development Activities

The objective of these activities is to provide information and resources on various sustainable agriculture topics as well as networking opportunities to the target audience of extension faculty, mentor and small to medium-scale farmers, local service providers and others that work directly with farmers.


Georgia Organics Annual Conference

Travel scholarships were provided to 14 agriculture professionals to attend the 2023 Georgia Organics Conference & Expo. Attending this conference gave these participants the opportunity to learn more about organic/sustainable practices and business procedures. ( 3 county agents, 4 extension personnel, 4 NGO partners, 1 mentor farmer, and 2 graduate students in sustainable ag extension curricula) 


Beginning Organic Farming Workshop

One-day classroom training on Beginning Organic Farming practices. Taught by guest speaker, Daniel Parson, the training provided an overarching understanding of topics such as sustainable production practices, crop scheduling, available resources, soil fertility/health, farm infrastructure, pest management, harvest & postharvest practices, marketing & farm business plans, and more.

Acadiana Sustainable Farm Tour

A self-guided tour of four local sustainable farms in the Acadiana (Lafayette) region of Louisiana. Participants were able to visit and learn about a hydroponic greenhouse operation, a sustainable cut flower and vegetable farm, a pastured multi-species livestock farm with its own value added processing facility, and an intensive vegetable farm.  At each farm on the tour, the farmers provided an educational talk about the various aspects of their farm and the farm tour participants were able to ask questions.  


Outcomes and impacts:

At least 75 percent of the participants/attendees of the trainings increased knowledge, skills and/or attitudes about sustainable agriculture topics, practices, strategies, and approaches.  

A majority of the agriculture professionals intend to use the knowledge, attitudes, skills and/or awareness learned to better serve their field.

Educational & Outreach Activities

1 On-farm demonstrations
2 Published press articles, newsletters
4 Tours
24 Travel Scholarships
1 Workshop field days
1 Other educational activities: GA OG, social media

Participation Summary:

53 Extension
6 Nonprofit
4 Ag service providers (other or unspecified)
31 Farmers/ranchers
34 Others

Learning Outcomes

73 Participants gained or increased knowledge, skills and/or attitudes about sustainable agriculture topics, practices, strategies, approaches
64 Ag professionals intend to use knowledge, attitudes, skills and/or awareness learned

Project Outcomes

2 New working collaborations
3 Agricultural service provider participants who used knowledge and skills learned through this project (or incorporated project materials) in their educational activities, services, information products and/or tools for farmers
29 Farmers reached through participant's programs
Additional Outcomes:

Quotes from our post-training surveys:


"I am going to use this information when making farm visits. I will also use information I learned today in writing organic farming articles for my parish newsletter." - Louisiana County Agent

"This training has provided a scaffolding for planning an initial operation— mostly in the form of what questions to ask myself during the planning process, and understanding the general categories of concern to focus on." -Beginning Farmer

"I'm grateful for this opportunity to meet local farmers that are knowledgeable and experienced in this climate." -Ag Professional

Face of SARE

Face of SARE:

SARE educational materials are distributed at all of our SARE trainings and other relevant programs in Louisiana both at Southern and Louisiana State University. SARE materials are distributed to the public by state and county faculty that participate in our programs. SARE books and educational materials are distributed to our advisory council, county agents, mentor farmers, and scholarship recipients. SARE trainings, information, and resources are advertised and shared on social media pages and the Louisiana SARE website.

57 Farmers received information about SARE grant programs and information resources
65 Ag professionals received information about SARE grant programs and information resources
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.