Source: DELAWARE STATE UNIVERSITY submitted to
OUTREACH AND ASSISTANCE FOR SOCIALLY DISADVANTAGED FARMERS AND RANCHERS IN DELAWARE
Sponsoring Institution
National Institute of Food and Agriculture
Project Status
TERMINATED
Funding Source
Reporting Frequency
Annual
Accession No.
0214503
Grant No.
2009-51200-19603
Project No.
DELX0029-08-02
Proposal No.
2008-00969
Multistate No.
(N/A)
Program Code
2501
Project Start Date
Dec 1, 2008
Project End Date
Nov 30, 2011
Grant Year
2009
Project Director
Essel, A. E.
Recipient Organization
DELAWARE STATE UNIVERSITY
1200 NORTH DUPONT HIGHWAY
DOVER,DE 19901
Performing Department
COOPERATIVE EXTENSION
Non Technical Summary
The primary goal of Delaware State University's (DSU) Outreach and Assistance for Socially Disadvantaged Farmers and Ranchers (OASDFR) Program is to provide outreach and technical assistance to encourage and assist socially disadvantaged farmers and ranchers (SDFR) to own and operate farms successfully. Currently, there are 545 social disadvantaged & women operated farms in Delaware earning some income from agriculture production. DSU has a rich history and valuable experience in addressing the expressed needs of minority, underserved and socially disadvantaged populations of the state and region through its OASDFR Program. Through on-going technical assistance and outreach efforts, farmers have adopted new, alternative farm enterprises, rendering their operations more profitable. Today, many continue to operate their farms and participate as DSU collaborators. Continuation of the DSU OASDFR Program is imperative. Based on 11-years of outreach efforts, participants have demonstrated improvements and transformative learning skills in marketing, record keeping, financial management and whole farm planning. Renewal of the capacity of existing DSU programs will ensure that SDFRs are trained in alternative crops (ex. aquaculture, meat goats, ethnic vegetables, and tree production), to improve their quality of lives through increased farm ownership, profitability and financial security. As written, this proposal will provide SDFR with opportunities to enhance their knowledge in areas pertinent to farm, environmental and economic sustainability. Through the guidance of a newly formed advisory council, we propose to build a team of state, federal and university experts to engage socially and economically disadvantaged and underserved farmers.
Animal Health Component
100%
Research Effort Categories
Basic
(N/A)
Applied
100%
Developmental
(N/A)
Classification

Knowledge Area (KA)Subject of Investigation (SOI)Field of Science (FOS)Percent
6016099302050%
6016099303050%
Goals / Objectives
1. Provide comprehensive outreach and technical assistance to socially disadvantaged farm families in farm ownership, farm planning, record-keeping and financial management, computer operations and production management. 2. Provide outreach, training and technical assistance in the identification, production and marketing and economics of alternative enterprises, such as ethnic crops, aquaculture and meat goats. 3. Provide increased awareness and technical assistance for underserved and socially disadvantaged farmers to enhance their participation in federal farm programs administered by USDA agencies. 4. Conduct outreach for youth, especially socially disadvantage youth, to enlighten them about professional and employment opportunities available in agriculture.
Project Methods
1. One-on-one contact and mentoring 2. Group meetings, seminars, workshops and conferences 3. Print media (newsletters, fact sheets and handouts) 4. On-farm demonstrations (DSU and local farmers) 5. Field days 6. Tours of successful agriculture and related operations 7. Farm and home visits 8. Short courses 9. Public schools and classroom visits

Progress 12/01/08 to 11/30/11

Outputs
(N/A)

Impacts
Over 150 people received ethnic crops education through participation through field days, farm tours, one on one farm visits, workshops, a conference and bus tours. One Hispanic producer was able to continue selling the Raymond peppers to restaurants on Rehoboth beach as well as ten new producers are growing and marketing ethnic crops at farmers markets and on-farm sales for an increase in income was over $50,000. During 2011, the Hispanic group was able to increase the vegetable acreage and the staff increased the vegetable demonstrations and hands on workshops to assist this group. An Immigrant Producer Series was held across the state and increased participant's knowledge in a myriad of subject areas including, planning a vegetable garden, selling at a farmers market, financial opportunities through USDA programs, starting a small farm business. The first immigrant producer workshop was held in New Castle County, Delaware to reach African and West Indian producers. This workshop focused on ethnic crop production in an urban environment. The 3 workshops in 2011 attracted 53 participants. Staff also added farm visits to the Hispanic farms. "Profiting from a Few Acres" conference held on 12/12/11 - 12/13/11; which was hosted by DSU Cooperative Extension. At this conference, 114 participants were given variety of presentations made by producers and specialists on topics related to farm and risk management. Through efforts of the DSU Farm Management Specialist, Mr. Perry, a black farmer in Milton, Delaware, was able to expand his operation into vegetable production creating a larger profit over the small grain he was growing during the past several years. The informational meetings that have taken place have had great results. Over 100 farmers have received training on alternative enterprises including aquaculture, meat goat production, pastured poultry and ethnic / specialty vegetable crops. According to the workshop evaluations, when the farmers leave these meetings, they have indicated they have more knowledge on marketing, production and skills for farm business planning. A series of interactive, hands-on learning opportunities were presented in 2011, three workshops were held, on 05/18/11 (Stocking), 06/08/11 (Feeding) and 08/10/11 (Water Quality) with a total of 42 people participants. This event taught participants proper methods of fish handling, counting, stocking, feeding and water quality. Evaluations from each of the three workshops indicate and increase in technical knowledge as a result of participation in the series. Small flock owners Delaware do not have access to information on good management practices and Biosecurity for their flocks until "COOTPASTIC" was a one day conference dedicated to over 300 small flock producers in the US.

Publications

  • No publications reported this period


Progress 12/01/09 to 11/30/10

Outputs
OUTPUTS: Activity under Objective 1- Profiting from a few acres was another success, with 96 participants in attendance. The conference taught many topics, some include; how to be a successful marketer, beekeeping, transitioning to organics, agricultural tourism, cut flowers to increase profits, dairy goat and cheese making, extending profits with high tunnels and NRCS tunnel program, beating bugs with IPM, profiting through planning, and profiting with fruit trees. The conference was a great success resulting in very satisfied participants. DSU conducted one-on-one farm visits to 82 producers across the state during 2010. Technical assistance and training was provided to each of the small farmers or ranchers. Record keeping, general farm management practices, and future practices were some of the topics discussed with the small farmers. A new workshop series involving immigrant producers started up this year. They discussed growing and marketing ethnic crops in the Northeast. This series is very promising and will allow immigrants a better chance at making a profit on their production. Activities under Objective 2 - DSU conducted soil samples for producers across Delaware, and have given them tips and recommendations for better soil health. Six field days/ informational meetings were conducted on meat goats, pastured poultry, and aquaculture. The purpose of these events was to promote research and demonstrate the projects at the research farms to socially disadvantanged and begining farmers. There were also some demonstrations done at the Student Outreach Research Center. There were two workshops given about season extension and how to grow sweet potato slips. The 2010 pole lima bean workshop was held at the research center and had 52 participants that wanted to get more information about this local niche crop. There are eight hands-on workshops for the Kent Master Gardeners, which better trains them to answer horticultural questions. Three on-farm demonstrations showed new practices and/ or new technologies for growing, and marketing specialty crops. The crops included ethnic crops, pole lima beans organic and traditionally grown and small flock pasture poultry. Activities under Objective 3 - USDA programs outreach meetings were conducted in each county. Over 70 producers receive information and undated of farm programs offered by USDA agencies to include qualifications, application procedures, timelines and availability of technical assistance. Activities under Objective 4 - Farm tour is a huge success, and it allows over 1500 students, that would not normally be able to see the ins and outs of farm life to be able to. This project is a great tool to teach school children where there food comes from. DSU had a booth at the Museum of Natural History that taught children about poultry. There were a total of 995 children at the museum. PARTICIPANTS: During 2010, the DSU staff listed in the first year's report continued working on this project and had assistance from our state USDA partners; Farm Service Agency, Natural Resource Conservation Service, Rural Development and the Risk Management Agency (RMA). The partners continue to update DSU staff to new and changing programs as well as speak at our workshops and conferences. We also partnered with University of Maryland Eastern Shore (UMES) to better assist farmers that fall at the borders of our two states and to increase programming outreach for farmers in the region. DSU continues to work with the Delaware Department of Agriculture and the University of Delaware to unify the outreach efforts within the State. DSU also partnered with the RMA, National Crop Insurance Service and UMES to put on an Extension Professional Development workshop, which was attended by 40 educators from across the eastern half of the United States TARGET AUDIENCES: The new initiative for this past year was to reach more Hispanic and Spanish speaking producers. This made the outreach style change to a community leader focus. We found mass mailings and other forms of promotion did not work for this audience, but having participation in the planning from a few community leaders was the way to advance. The other socially disadvantaged group is the India - Americans, which have poultry farms in Sussex County. This group is slowly working with us to make changes on their farms. PROJECT MODIFICATIONS: Nothing significant to report during this reporting period.

Impacts
Over 200 people received ethnic crops education through participation through field days, farm tours, one on one farm visits, workshops, a conference and bus tours. One Hispanic producer was able to sell the Raymond peppers to restaurants on Rehoboth beach as well as ten new producers are growing and marketing ethnic crops at farmers markets and on-farm sales for an increase in income was approximately $50,000. During 2010, the Hispanic group was able to increase the vegetable acreage and the staff increased the vegetable demonstrations and hands on workshops to assist this group. A Immigrant Producer Series was held across the state and increased participants knowledge in a myriad of subject areas including, planning a vegetable garden, selling at a farmers market, financial opportunities through USDA programs, starting a small farm business. The first immigrant producer workshop was held in New Castle County, Delaware to reach African and West Indian producers. This workshop focused on ethnic crop production in an urban environment. The 3 workshops in 2010 attracted 53 participants. Staff also added farm visits to the Hispanic farms. "Profiting from a Few Acres" conference held on 11/10/10 - 11/11/10; which was hosted by DSU Cooperative Extension. At this conference, 96 participents were given varitey of presentations made by producers and specialists on topics related to farm and risk management. On 09/13/10 - 09/14/10; producers were given a Bus tour to the Immigrant farmers Markets in New York City. On the tour, participants got the opportunity to interact with more experienced producers at the NY farmers markets. Through efforts of the DSU Farm Management Specialist, Mr. Perry, a black farmer in Milton, Delaware, was able to get back into the poultry business. After his two poultry houses sat empty and created no income for a few years, John was able to make a connection between Mr. Perry and a poultry integrator that lead to a temporary contract. This contract increased Mr. Perry's farm income by $75,000. The informational meetings that have taken place have had great results. Over 100 farmers have received training on alternative enterprises including aquaculture, meat goat production, pastured poultry and ethnic / specialty vegetable crops. According to the workshop evaluations, when the farmers leave these meetings, they have indicated they have more knowledge on marketing, production and skills for farm business planning. A series of interactive, hands-on learning opportunities were presented in 2010, 3 workshops were held, on 05/22/10 (Stocking), 06/08/10 (Feeding) and 08/11/10 (Water Quality) with a total of 35 people participants. This event taught participants proper methods of fish handling, counting, stocking, feeding and water quality. Evaluations from each of the three workshops indicate and increase in technical knowledge as a result of participation in the series. Small flock owners Delaware do not have access to information on good management practices and Biosecurity for their flocks until "COOTPASTIC" was a one day conference dedicated to over 300 small flock producers in the US.

Publications

  • McCrea, Brigid. 2009. "Fact Sheet: The Basics of Brooding Poultry." Delaware State University.
  • McCrea, Brigid. 2009. "Fact Sheet: The Basics of Winterizing Your Coop." Delaware State University.
  • Wasylkowski, Michael. 2010. "Fact Sheet: Organic Production." Delaware State University.
  • Clendaniel, John W., and Michael Wasylkowski. 2010. "Fact Sheet: Pole Bean Project - Two Thousand and Nine." Delaware State University.
  • Clendaniel, John W., and Michael Wasylkowski. 2010. "Fact Sheet: High Tunnel Tomato Demonstration." Delaware State University.
  • Jackson- OBrien, Dahlia. 2010. "Fact Sheet: Pumpkin Seeds: Do they control worms"
  • Jackson- OBrien, Dahlia. 2010. "Fact Sheet: Toxoplasmosis: Common Cause of Abortion in Sheep and Goats." Delaware State University.


Progress 12/01/08 to 11/30/09

Outputs
OUTPUTS: Delaware State University (DSU) activities under Objective 1- We held a two-day conference titled "Profiting from a Few Acres" in Dover, DE on February 20 and 21, 2009, in which participants learned how other producers effectively manage the financial, crop diversity, production, marketing, and legal risks associated with their agribusinesses. We also developed an evaluation tool to determine the technical assistance needs of limited resource, women and socially disadvantaged farmers in Delaware through a survey administered by the state statistician. DSU offered a Direct Marketing workshop for 39 producers titled "Managing Risks Associated with Direct Marketing". Also, DSU educators conducted eight small & beginning farmer workshops on farm basics including marketing and business tools. Farm visits were conduct on 83 producers' farms to provide them with technical assistance in production agriculture, general farm management, financial management, keeping and tracking farm business records, USDA farm programs, developing business plans and on-farm risk management. Activities for Objective 2- DSU Extension -conducted soil testing on 34 socially disadvantaged farms and had six on-farm demonstration sites conducted on cooperating producers' farms to teach recommended methods for producing alternative enterprises. Six poultry production workshops were held in each Delaware counties for 56 producers, as part of a Small Flock Education Series. We also held a Small Ruminant workshop that covered the "Marketing for Farm-Raised Sheep and Goats" for 21 producers. Activities under Objective 3- DSU formed a partnership with USDA agencies in Delaware, to include NRCS, FSA, and RD, to increase outreach and technical assistance offered to socially disadvantaged audiences by these agencies. We held a twilight tour on Pole Lima Beans at the University's Outreach & Research Center during which a state USDA specialist gave an update on the Farm Bill programs for 72 producers. DSU educators also held outreach meetings in each county on farm bill issues and grant opportunities for 53 small and underserved farmers. In January 2009 DSU held USDA Opportunities sessions for 111 producers. Our biannual Small Farm Newsletter incorporated information on USDA programs and was distributed to all stakeholders. Activities for Objective 4 - DSU gave Ag Opportunity presentations at seven Delaware public schools and reached 724 students. Four tours were conducted on DSU research and extension facilities to increase awareness of agricultural opportunity among 476 high school and college students. DSU also held a three-day farm tour in May 2009, which highlighted agriculture through demonstration and hands-on activities for 2,053 elementary students. PARTICIPANTS: This project is overseen by Dr. Albert Essel, Project Director and Associate Dean for Extension /Agricultural Economist, making sure the project is meeting or exceeding the expected outcomes. John Clendaniel, Co- Project Director and Coordinator of DSU Small Farms Program, is responsible for the program content and making sure the overall project is on task throughout the three year time period as well as keeping project staff on task to complete the expected outcomes. Andy Wetherill and Mike Wasylkowski, are Extension Educators, currently working with the socially disadvantaged farmers in Delaware and are responsible for the outlined objective activities and outcomes. This includes demonstrations, workshops, meetings, one-on-one farm visits and field days. The three program specialists; Dr. Dennis McIntosh, Associate Research Professor / Extension Specialist - Aquaculture, Dr. Dahlia Jackson-O'Brian, Assistant Research Professor / Extension Specialist - Small Ruminants and Dr Brigid McCrea, Assistant Research Professor / Extension Specialist - Poultry provide technical support, information and resources within their field of expertise and assist project staff on adapting research and outreach materials on alternative enterprises for SDFR in Delaware. Tom Harmon, Extension Program Assistant, provides project staff with program assistance. The assistance includes demonstration and workshops. Student Outreach Assistants, Megan and Lauren, also provides project staff with program assistance with demonstration and workshops. The state USDA offices, including NRCS, FSA and Rural Development, have assisted us with program information as well as provided speakers to inform farmers about Farm Bill Program opportunities. TARGET AUDIENCES: The target audience is made up of socially disadvantaged farmers, which includes minorities, beginning, women and underserved farmers, throughout Delaware. According to the Delaware Agricultural Census, there could be up to 545 people that could be targeted for our program. PROJECT MODIFICATIONS: Not relevant to this project.

Impacts
The outcomes for Objective one starts with the "Profiting from a few Acres" conference; with the three plenary sessions covering Business Planning and Managing Legal Risks and the story from successful small farm owners and the 20 breakout sessions held on issues such as in food safety, livestock, alternative crops, crop insurance and marketing. This conference covered strategies from the five USDA defined areas of risk and was attended by 116 people. Conference evaluations indicated that 86% of participants increased their knowledge about risk management. The evaluations also reflected that 77% of attendants felt the conference was excellent, 20% felt it was good and the remaining 3% felt it was average. DSU trained a total 288 farmers, through one conference and four workshops. These farmers indicated they have better knowledge and skills in farm business planning, record keeping, financial management, and direct marketing. For the second objective, DSU incorporated soil testing within the farm visits for 34 socially disadvantaged farmers. This is the beginning of a three year program to educate farmers on the importance of soil testing and soil health. During 2009, DSU educator created six on-farm demonstrations on cooperating producers' farms and held five field days to demonstrate recommended methods for alternative enterprises. Demonstration sites included pole lima beans, hot peppers, herbs, organic vegetables, meat goats, cut flower and sweet potatoes. Of the 85 farmers that received training on growing new crop enterprises, and methods to improve productivity and reduce costs, thirty-one farmers said they will try at least one learned recommended practice or technology on their farms and five stated they will try an alternative crop in 2010. After DSU educators conducted 83 farm visits, all visited producers indicated that after they received technical assistance on production agriculture, alternative crop opportunities, general farm management, financial management, keeping and tracking farm business records, USDA farm programs, developing business plans and on-farm risk management they felt more informed on the issues they were having and would use knowledge in making decisions about their operation in the future. For our third objective DSU worked with state USDA partners to hold Farm Bill program meetings in each county and included the information into existing workshops. These six meeting/ workshops provided farm bill opportunities to 173 producers in 2009. During each of the 83 farm visits educators provided additional USDA program information and discuss any opportunities that were available to our clientele. Our program also incorporated information on USDA programs in its biannual Small Farm Newsletter that was distributed to all stakeholders. Under our fourth Objective the program increased Ag awareness as well as overall knowledge about agricultural careers to 3,253 youth through school presentation, demonstrations and hand-on experiences completed by multiple school visits and farm.

Publications

  • No publications reported this period