Context, justification and assumptions – Utah is the 8th most urban state and the 2nd driest
state in the nation. Due to these challenges, the protection of natural resources and human safety demands the implementation of thoughtful and sustainable management approaches, and the Utah WSARE PDP Program is committed to fulfilling the professional development goals of SARE, particularly within specialty crops (13,600 acres valued at $33 million) and forage and rangelands (710,000 acres). Professional training efforts and mini-grants in sustainable agriculture will help Utah producers and ranchers overcome these challenges and implement sustainable practices.
Stakeholder and Partner Involvement – The Utah WSARE PDP Program will engage
stakeholders through: 1) PDP Advisory Committee, 2) feedback from commodity user surveys,
3) pre- and post-training impact evaluations, and 4) solicitation of input on specific issues from
stakeholder organization leaders. A functioning advisory group will be created, comprised of
three county extension agents, two farmers, one USDA-ARS professional, and one staff member from each of NRCS, Utah Farm Bureau, and Utah Department of Agriculture and Food (UDAF).
The committee will meet up to twice per year through Zoom meetings (online interface). They will help to guide and evaluate the Utah PDP program, and will review/award the mini-grant submissions.
Inputs – The WSARE state PDP program will be housed in the Dept. of Biology at USU,
Logan, UT. Included is office and lab space, support for computer technical support,
bookkeeping, mail distribution, marketing and communication, and other common essential
services. The Utah PDP Program can utilize on-campus conference facilities as well as
classroom space located at county extension offices. Funding for the mini-grant will be split
with the USU IPM Program. No in-kind or matching funds are being requested.
1) Target audience: For the professional development workshop, we expect that approximately
125 USU extension agents and faculty, personnel in the UDAF, USDA-NRCS, Wasatch
Community Gardens, and other federal and state agricultural/natural resource agencies and
NGO’s will attend. One mini-grant will be awarded per year within USU Extension. For
professional development travel, approximately 25 USU Extension county and campus
faculty and staff will benefit. For promotion of WSARE grants and services, approximately
300 agriculture professionals from various education, state/federal agencies, and NGOs will
Project objectives from proposal:
Outcomes – Agricultural professionals will have increased awareness in local and regional
sustainable agriculture issues. The professional development training and mini-grants will
accelerate the adoption of sustainable agriculture practices in Utah and promote the use of
sustainable agriculture systems in land use decision‐making. These programs will also enhance
collaborations and allow for production of educational materials or demonstrations, scholarship,
and impact evaluation. In general, approximately 250 agriculture professionals in education,
state/federal agencies, and NGO’s will increase their knowledge about SARE and sustainable
agriculture. Of those, we anticipate that 75 will use SARE and sustainable agriculture
information during presentations, workshops, and field days, and approximately a third of them
will be able to communicate to their stakeholders about the WSARE PDP program. See
Appendix A – Logic Model, for more information.