MoSARE Plan of Work 2021-2022

Project Overview

Project Type: PDP State Program
Funds awarded in 2022: $149,998.00
Projected End Date: 12/31/2022
Grant Recipient: University of Missouri
Region: North Central
State: Missouri
State Coordinator:
Dan Downing
University of Missouri


Not commodity specific


  • Animal Production: aquaculture, feed/forage, stockpiled forages, winter forage
  • Crop Production: agroforestry, application rate management, cover crops, fertilizers, food product quality/safety, forest farming, forest/woodlot management, grafting, high tunnels or hoop houses, irrigation, silvopasture, water management
  • Education and Training: demonstration, extension, technical assistance, workshop
  • Farm Business Management: grant making, risk management
  • Natural Resources/Environment: carbon sequestration, soil stabilization, Water Conservation and Management
  • Pest Management: integrated pest management, mulching - plastic
  • Production Systems: holistic management
  • Soil Management: composting, green manures, organic matter, soil quality/health
  • Sustainable Communities: food hubs, local and regional food systems, sustainability measures, urban agriculture

    Proposal abstract:

    Missouri SARE plan of work initiatives for the calendar years 2021 and 2022 are:

    1. Sustainable Crop Production
    2. Sustainable Livestock Production
    3. Beginning Farmers, Ranchers, and Local Foods
    4. Emerging Issues.



    Project objectives from proposal:

    Special Note: The following PDPs will be carried forward from 2020 due to Covid -19 issues and the lead organizers desire for these to be face to face trainings. These PDPs along with the new PDPs will result in a minimum of six PDP offerings in 2021, and six PDPs in 2022. Funding for the carried forward PDPs was budgeted in the 2019-2020 POW and has also been carried forward. Initiative 2: Sustainable Crop Production 1. Hydroponics in Missouri2. PDP Number 2B, 2020 - Alfalfa Production in Missouri Initiative 3: Sustainable Livestock Production 1. PDP Number 3A, 2019 - Production & Maintenance of Quality Forage in Missouri 2. Sustainable Aquaculture - Shrimp & Fin Fish Production in the Midwest Target Audience for all PDPs: Extension Educators and other agency personnel will be the target audience for all PDPs offered during the 2021-2022 plan of work time frame. Other “agricultural educators” may be included as resources permit. Evaluation: Standard methods will be used for PDP evaluation. Increases in knowledge of the topics of the training will be assessed with a pre-and post-event evaluation/survey and changes in behavior will be evaluated using a 6-9 month post-event survey for all PDPs offered during the 2021-2022 plan of work time frame. The initiatives and PDP offerings for 2021 - 2022 are: • Initiative #1. Sustainable Crop Production PDP# 1A. - Tree Sap Products for Missouri Forest Farming Enterprises – 2021. The program will consist of three satellite training events and 2 hands on field workshops to be held in targeted regions with potential for tree syrup production. At least 60 natural resources and agricultural professionals within Missouri Extension, Missouri-Natural Resources Conservation Service, the Missouri Department of Conservation, 10 champion foresters, and others will participate. PDP #1B. - Farmers Woodlands and Wildlife – 2022 This PDP will provide the opportunity for Agriculture & Environment field specialists to learn about various woodland and wildlife management practices local producers can implement on their properties. MU Natural Resource Extension faculty will conduct the two-day training event; beginning with lunch on Day 1 and concluding with lunch on Day 2. Individuals from conservation-oriented organizations will also be invited to attend. The target audiences are: LU/MU Agricultural & Environmental Educators, Missouri Natural Resources Conservation Service, and the Missouri Department of Conservation personnel. In working with field specialists, we have identified a need for a better understanding of natural resource management, particularly for producers owning a mixed landscape of fields and woodlands. This PDP will increase their awareness of potential natural resource programs and provide them with the tools for fielding questions they may have from producers about various aspects of woodland and wildlife management. Topics will include: • Integrating Woodland and Wildlife Management Practices o Rehabilitating Neglected Woodlands o Improving the Woodland/Field Interface o Woodland/Field Health Threats o Evening Short Program – White Oak, Whiskey, and Wine • Agroforestry Opportunities for Small Farms o Forest Farming o Riparian Corridors o Specialty Crops o Wind/Odor-breaks This training will be held in three locations with at least 10 participants each. • Pre- and Post-quizzes will be used to assess knowledge gain of key concepts. A six to nine-month follow-up survey of what woodland/wildlife awareness events they conducted and their impacts will be conducted. Initiative #2. Sustainable Livestock Production PDP #2A - Regulations for Selling Local Foods – 2022. This PDP will be ideal for personnel working in Nutrition and Health, Horticulture, Livestock, Community Development, Business Development, and anyone else who might be answering questions from farmers and/or people who are wanting to sell meat, eggs, milk, or their produce or any other type of food product locally. This includes information on produce safety regulations and marketplace requirements, produce safety best practices, providing safe samples at farmers markets and related venues, food labeling requirements, regulations for selling canned foods and other foods, regulations for selling meat, poultry, eggs, and dairy products, requirements for an inspected kitchen, and shared use kitchens. As a result of this ISE, attendees will be more aware of the resources (fact sheets, curricula, trainings, trainers, people to ask questions to) that MU Extension has related to food safety for selling food products. – Londa Nwadike, lead. PDP #2B - Marketing for the Small Farm – 2022. The PDP leaders will work together to coordinate a 1-day hands-on training on marketing plan development, effective social media utilization, writing impactful copy, and crafting sales messaging.  The objective of this training is to offer extension educators, agency partners and farmers a comprehensive course on developing a marketing plan, utilizing social media and email effectively, and marketing and selling products through online channels. In turn, educators and agency partners will be able to conduct trainings and educate farmers on how to effectively market their farm and farm products. Justification: Farmers, extension educators and agency partners are adept at horticulture, plant science, funding, soil health and a myriad of other agriculture related fields. However, a key area of expertise in which they lack training is marketing.  During the course of their education the target audience will learn how to develop a marketing plan, how to utilize social media effectively, and how to increase sales through online channels. Outcomes: Extension educators will increase their knowledge and awareness of the economic and promotional benefits of an integrated marketing strategy. They will also learn the steps involved in creating this marketing strategy and key ingredients in having an effective marketing strategy. As a result of this training workshop: 1. Extension specialists will be able to make more informed recommendations about marketing to growers and other stakeholders. 2. At least 10 participants will be expected to give at least one recommendation, on the subject, to at least one grower, and/or write at least one newsletter article on the subject. 3. At least 10 educators will conduct workshops that will include at least one topic covered in this workshop. 4. All educators will improve their ability to assist growers and members of the public on effective marketing strategies. Interviews and surveys will be used to evaluate the impact of this ISE project. Increase in knowledge of the topics of the training will be assessed with a pre-and post-event evaluation. Survey and changes in behavior will be evaluated using a 6-9 month post-event survey. Lead Organizer Mike Crowden. Initiative #3. Beginning Farmers & Ranchers/Local Foods (Regional & State Initiative) PDP # 3A - Helping Farmers Transition to Online Local Food Sales – 2021. This PDP will be held as one day face to face training in Columbia, MO if COVID-19 health and social distancing requirements allow. If needed for social distancing, we will hold the meeting online via zoom. The target audiences are: Horticulture Specialists, Ag Business Specialists, Community Development and Community Engagement Specialists, Livestock Specialists, HES Nutrition and Health Specialists, Small Farm Outreach Workers, and other Educators. Justification: The MU Extension Food Systems team and others within MU Extension have discussed that this training would be very useful for our MU and LU Extension personnel to have so that they, in turn, can help producers with making the transition to online sales of their local foods products. The COVID-19 pandemic has greatly accelerated the need for producers to be able to sell their food online. Many MO producers interested in selling online do not have experience or expertise in online sales platforms. Topics: to be included in the training are: 1. Benefits and drawbacks of various online sales platforms,  2. How to use various online sales platforms. 3. Helping producers properly plan and manage inventory for several sales streams s. 4. Helping producers make decisions on what sales outlet to prioritize. A Pre/post- training evaluation will be administered, and distribute resource materials provided by the speakers after the training. PDP #3B - Beginning Farmer & Rancher Train the Train - 2021 and 2020 – Up to 10 education professionals who are members of the MoSARE beginning farmer education team will be encouraged to attend existing beginning farmer trainings and workshops targeting how to work with beginning farmers and ranchers. The train the trainer model will be used. Upon returning from the training, each participant will be expected to host a beginning famer workshop and/or incorporate their newly acquired tools into their existing programs. MoSARE Co-coordinators, lead. • Initiative #4. Emerging Issues PDP#4A – Forum & Training - Emerging Issues in Agriculture –2022. The event will be a one day training hosted on the Lincoln University campus. The target audience will be Lincoln University, University of Missouri Extension, USDA, and State of Missouri professionals working in the agriculture sector. Topics to be included in the training: Personal and Community Leadership . 2. Cultural Training: Diversity & Inclusion . 3. Mental Health Issues in Rural Communities To promote deeper learning, a reflection activity entitled "What? So What? Now What"? will be conducted by Rebecca Mott and Amy Bax at the end of the event. Reflection helps promote critical thinking, problem solving, and connections between past experience and new information. Evaluation Plan: A participant survey that includes four levels of evaluation questions. These questions will explore participant’s reactions, learning, behavior and results. Mott will conduct virtual focus group interviews with interested participants 30-60 days after the event using VoiceThread technology (Mott, 2018). This longitudinal work will help us gain a deeper understanding of how the event impacted participants, what issues were identified as concerns, and how the participants adapted . PDP #4B - Bringing a Rural Wealth Creation Framework to Food Systems Work in Missouri – 2022. This is a six part Zoom webinar series to be held statewide delivered by national WealthWorks practitioners. This formal portion of the PDP will be supplemented by incorporating discussions of rural wealth creation concepts into the MU Extension’s Food System Network’s monthly calls. Follow-up meetings will occur with Extension and community based participants six months and 12 months after the trainings conclude. Rural Wealth Creation is a systems-based approach to community economic development that seeks to build sustainable rural communities. WealthWorks is one way to implement this approach and this national program that was developed from 5 years of on the ground work in high poverty rural communities. This approach is guided by three goals that align with SARE’s mission: building multiple forms of wealth (balancing the economy, environment and society), sustainability with an emphasis on increasing local ownership and control of assets. Lincoln University & University of Missouri Extension will use this PDP: 1. To strengthen existing programming that targets producers that are growing and marketing food to consumers with a systems approach and other guiding principles. 2. Launch a WealthWorks Extension program in Missouri. Mallory Rahe guided this effort at Oregon State University in partnership with a local non-profit Rural Development Initiatives (RDI) from 2013-2019. The target audiences are: 1. Minimum of 15 LU/MU Extension faculty affiliated with the Food System Network. The Network is facilitated by the LU/MU Extension Food Systems Team. The team is an interdisciplinary small group of regional County Engagement Specialists, Field Specialists, and state specialists from all program areas. 2. Ten food system stakeholders in Missouri who are currently engaged with MU Extension faculty. Participating Extension faculty members will be encouraged to invite a food system stakeholder in their region to participate in the professional development series. WealthWorks programming must be community led, engaging community stakeholders in the PD will increase the likelihood of establishing this systems-based programming. Justification: Extension Food System Team suggested the need for this PD. The team is working to promote food system programs and initiatives that support the entire food system, in addition to current sector specific efforts. Topics: to be included in the training are: 1. Overview to Rural Wealth Creation, 2. Using a Value Chain Approach to Building Food Systems, 3. An Intentional Focus on Inclusive Community Economic Development, 4. Lessons Learned from Food System Building in the Region, 5. Building and Measuring Rural Wealth Creation, 6. Extension Role as Coordinators and Coaches. Lead Organizers – Mallory Rahe and Sarah Hultine-Massengale

    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.