- Animals: swine
- Animal Production: general animal production
This project developed the Pasture Pork 101 program which included a series of in-service training workshops for agriculture agents. In-depth training was provided to agents in Pork Muscle Quality, Value Added Processing, Pork Marketing, Production Practices, Pasture Management and Food Safety. In addition, a “Pasture Based Pork Production Manual” was initiated providing resources to agents. Agents were trained on the use of the Pork Information Gateway (ncsu.porkgateway.org) and provided state specific resources at http://www.ncchoices.com/farmer_tools.html. This program has aided small farmers in establishing production systems and markets.
Project objectives:div style="margin-left:1em;">
- • Provide county extension agents with advanced knowledge and skill set in pasture-based hog production, bolstering the agent’s attitude towards sustainable agriculture, ending a reluctance to provide comprehensive training to local farmers.
• Facilitate a series of comprehensive training session for extension agents covering all aspects of pasture-based hog production enabling these agents to provide more one-on-one technical assistance.
• Focus training on incorporation of pigs into diversified farming operations to encourage agents with both crop and livestock appointments to attend and collaborate on farmer training in their own counties.
• Use “model farms” each located in the three distinct regions of North Carolina (Mountains, Piedmont, and Coastal), giving extension agents a hands-on training appropriate for their own environment and a local contact for future county-run workshops.
• Create a series of extension bulletins as part of a larger manual for agents to use and distribute from home offices.
• Build on and learn from other successful SARE-funded projects.