Organic Seed, Soils, and Sustainable Business: Three Intensives and an Online Tutorial
Since initiating the project in September 2010, we have planned and hosted the Organicology conference and related Seed, Soils and Sustainable business Intensives; and developed, distributed, and advertised on-line organic seed tutorials. We successfully planned and hosted the 2011 Organicology conference on February 10 – 12, with over 740 people attending the full conference. As part of Organicology, we hosted a one-day organic seed production intensive. Industry experts trained over 70 farmers, extension personnel, and other agricultural professionals in organic production of beet seed, carrot seed, onion seed, lettuce seed, and cucurbit seed; as well as seed climatic considerations, seed diseases, and seed quality.
Day long intensives, along with print and online resources produced from this project will provide agricultural professionals and the farmers they serve with tools and information critical to sustainable-organic practices. By filming the seed intensive and creating an online tutorial on the topic through eOrganic additional Extension and agricultural professionals will gain access to this information expanding the impact beyond the conference.
- 1) The Organicology conference was hosted in January 2011 and included an all day organic production class that covred beet seed, carrot seed, onion seed, lettuce seed, and cucurbit seed; as well as seed climatic considerations, seed diseases, and seed quality.
2) Several online tutorials were created from the seed production intensive. A videographer filmed the intensives and all presenters power point presentations were utilized in development of online tutorials created through eOrganic/eXtension.
3) The tutorials are currently being reviewed for compliance with organic standards and being incorporated into the eOrganic Community of Practice within eXtention.org.
4)The tutorials have been publicized online through the Organic Seed Alliance website and blog; on Facebook; on the ATTRA newsletter; and on Twitter. They were also publicized at the following events: Organic Seed Grower’s Conference, EcoFarm, and the Organic Seed Alliance Field Day. We are continuing to actively promote the tutorials, and will advertise them during at least 6 upcoming field days, conferences and other agricultural and Extension events.
Impacts and Contributions/Outcomes
Evaluations indicated that attendees increased their knowledge of organic seed production and were likely to change their practices based on what they learned. Following the conference, on-line tutorials were developed based on the seed intensive and were made available on eXtension.org: http://campus.extension.org/course/view.php?id=377. Since being made available in June 2011, over 5000 people have viewed the tutorials.