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Grant-Funded Projects

Read about grant-funded projects from the following years:

FREQUENTLY USED ACRONYMS
CAR = Crops at Risk
CIG = Conservation Innovation Grant
NIFA = National Institute of Food and Agriculture
NRCS = National Resources Conservation Service
NRI = National Research Initiative
NSF = National Science Foundation
OREI = Organic Agriculture Research and Extension Initiative
SARE = USDA Southern Region Sustainable Agriculture and Research Education

Project Title

Researchers

Funding Source

Amount

Years

2014        
Growing a Profitable Niche Meat Industry in North Carolina: Enhancing Economic Viability Across the Local Niche Meat Supply Chains PI: Casey McKissick; Co-PIs: Nancy Creamer, Sarah Blacklin, Rebecca Dunning, Matt Poore Golden Leaf Foundation $175,000 2014-2015
SARE PDP: Moving the NC Local Food System Toward Sustainability: A Comprehensive Graduate Course in Local Food Systems for Cooperative Extension Agents, Specialists, and other Educators PI: Joanna Massey Lelekacs Southern SARE $79,063 2014-2016
         
2013        
An Integrated Project to Enhance Food Security and Sustainability through the Development and Evaluation of Supply Chains from Local Farmers and Fishers to Two Large-Scale Models of Local Food Distribution (large grocery chain and military base) PI Nancy Creamer; Co-PIs Alice Ammerman, Gary Bullen, Rudi Colloredo-Mansfeld, Diane Ducharme, Carolyn Dunn, Rebecca Dunning, Rob Handfield, Leslie Hossfeld, Ray McKinnie, Tom Melton, Barry Nash, John O'Sullivan, Matt Poore, Michelle Schroeder-Moreno, Steve Washburn USDA NIFA AFRI $3.9 million 2013-2017
Sustainable Soil Management Practices for Strawberries: Evaluation of Individual and Integrated Approaches M. Schroeder-Moreno, Amanda McWhirt, Yasmin Cardoza, Gina Fernandez, Hannah Burrack National Strawberry Sustainability Initiative Grants Program (NSSI) $78,034 2013-2014
Students Working for an Agricultural Revolutionary Movement -- Creating New Economies Fund Project Shorlette Ammons (SWARM and Wayne Food Initiative) Resourceful Communities $10,000 2013-2014
Vermicompost and mycorrhizal interactions for reduction of spider mite populations in short-day strawberry cultivars Amanda McWhirt, M. Schroeder-Moreno, Gina Fernandez, Yasmin Cardoza North American Strawberry Growers Research Foundation 2013 Research Grant  $4,080 2013
         
2012        
Healthy Foods, Healthy Communities: A Proposal for Partnership to Establish a National Model for Improved Community Health and Economic Development through the Development of Community-Based Food Systems  Nancy Creamer, et al Blue Cross and Blue Shield Foundation of North Carolina

$2.5 million

(includes $1 million towards endowment)

2012-2015
Creating an Organic Plant Breeding Center for the Southeast
Reberg-Horton, C., Carter, T., Goodman, M., Isleib T., Murphy P., (all NCSU); Sligh, M. (RAFI-USA)
USDA OREI
$1,262,855
2012-2015
Assessing The Greenhouse Gas Mitigation Potential Of Organic Systems In The Southeast (See project description) Hu, Shuijin; Reberg-Horton, S. Chris; Robarge, Wayne, P; Schroeder-Moreno, Michelle, S.; Grossman, Julie, M.; Cardoza, Yasmin; Everman, Wesley, J. (all NCSU) USDA NIFA $734,802 2012-2015
CEFS Long-Term Systems Research: Providing the Building Blocks for Resilient Food Production Systems PI C. Reberg-Horton, N. Creamer, P. Mueller, J. Grossman, F. Louws , S. Hu, D. Orr, S. Bowen, J.-M. Luginbuhl, S. Petresemoli, M. Poore, S. Washburn, M. Schroeder-Moreno, Y. Cardoza (NCSU);  J. O'Sullivan, C. Raczkowski, B. Gray, G. Ejimakor (NCA&TSU) SARE $286,684 2012-2015
Quantifying the Multiplier Effect: What Sustainable Local Food Systems can Mean to Local Communities (See project description) D. Marticorena, N. Creamer (NCSU),  J. O’Sullivan (NCA&TSU), D. Swenson (Iowa State), D. Hughes (Clemson)

SARE

Project# LS12-248
$211,000 2012-2015

Preventing Obesity by Design in Wake County

Joanna Massey Lelekacs, Nancy Creamer

Natural Learning Initiative, NCSU (Via John Rex Endowment) $17,199 2012-2015
NC Choices - Helping Meat Processors Professionalize and Conduct Training Jennifer Curtis, et al NC Rural Center $325,000 2012-2014
Youth Food Initiative (Planning and Capacity-Building) Tes Thraves Blue Cross and Blue Shield of NC $75,000 2012-2013
Food System Assessment for Forsyth County . Nancy Creamer, et al Forsyth Futures  $19,680 2012
Support for 2012 Carolina Meat Conference McKissick and Curtis USDA SARE $10,000 2012
Small Equipment Grant for a BioTek H1 spectroscopic and fluorescent plate reader Grossman, J. Long, T., Shi, W., Perera, I., Haigler, C. NCSU College of Agriculture and Life Sciences $12,500 2012
Sowing the Seeds for Effective Urban Agriculture Leaders through Student-Community Partnerships Grossman, J., Schroeder, M., Jayaratne, K.S.U. NCSU Office of Extension & Engagement & Economic Development $10,000 2012
Contributions of Legume Cover Crop Root System to Soil Carbon Pools in Organic Systems Using Different Termination Strategies Jani, A. and Grossman, J. USDA SARE $10,997 2012
2011        
Enhancing Food Security by Cultivating Resilient Food Systems and Communities: Place-Based Foodshed Analysis From Research to Community Practice PI Susan Clark (Virginia Tech), Co-PI Michelle Schroeder-Moreno (NCSU), Cheryl Bown (West Virginia University) USDA NIFA

$2,041,100

(NCSU $540,141)

2011-2015
Youth Food Initiative Tes Thraves, Liz Driscoll (NC 4-H) USDA NIFA Beginning Farmer and Rancher Development Program (subcontract from Inter-Faith Food Shuttle) $115,000 2011-2014

Evaluating the potential of winter cover crops for carbon sequestration in degraded soils transitioning to organic production (See project description)

J. Grossman, Shuijin Hu, W. Shi, G. Reddy

USDA Integrated Organics Program

$700,000

2011-2013

2010        
Educating and Training Future Farmers, Ranchers, and Extension Personnel in Sustainable Agriculture PI Rose Konieg (University of Florida), Co-PI Michelle Schroeder-Moreno USDA SARE

$245,000

(NCSU $42,695)

2010-2013

Lighting up the black box: Improving legume performance on organic farms by optimizing microbially-mediated plant and soil nitrogen cycling processes

J. Grossman, M. Schroeder-Moreno, W. Shi, S. Bowen

SARE Research and Education Project (Project No. LS10-227)

$192,000

2010-2013

Evaluation of herbal remedies as alternatives to antibiotic therapy in dairy cattle

K.A. Mullen, S.P. Washburn, K.L. Anderson

SARE Graduate Student Project (Project No. GS10-094)

$9,990

2010-2012

Predictors of short-term nitrogen availability in organic farming systems that utilize warm season cover crops

S. O'Connell, N. Creamer

SARE Graduate Student Project (Project No. GS10-088)

$10,000

2010-2012

Organic Canola and Spelt Production Reberg-Horton, S.C., Hamilton, M.N. NC Tobacco Trust Fund Commission $73,500 2010-2012
Managing Field Borders for Weed and Seed Predators A.F. Fox, S.C. Reberg-Horton SARE Graduate Student Project $9,856 2010-2012
Preparing Students for a Diverse Future: Designing a Cultural Competency Training Program for Community Engagement in Agriculture Julie Grossman, S. Smith, L. Driscoll NCSU Diversity Mini-Grant Program $3,000 2010-2011

Farmhand Foods: An Innovative Enterprise to Help Build a Sustainable Local Food Economy

PIs Jennifer Curtis, Kathy Kennel

N.C. Rural Economic Development Center Economic Innovations Grant through the N.C. Agricultural Foundation

$75,000

2010

Farmhand Foods Soft Launch

PIs Jennifer Curtis, Kathy Kennel

N.C. Tobacco Trust Fund through the N.C. Agricultural Foundation

$70,560

2010

10% Campaign: Growing Demand for Local Foods in North Carolina Nancy Creamer Golden Leaf Foundation $300,000 2010
Cabarrus County Community Food System Assessment Proposal Nancy Creamer Cabarrus County $31,500 2010
Facilitating Institutional Change in the Cooperative Extension Service Through the Development of County-Based Food Systems Initiatives Nancy Creamer Alces Foundation $9,000 2010
Bringing New Farmers to the Table: a Comprehensive Support Program to Meet North Carolina's 10% Local Food Challenge Nancy Creamer USDA NIFA

$750,000

(NCSU $277,817)

2010
Effects of vermicompost on pollinator nutrition PI Yasmin Cardoza; C. Grozinger, Entomology, PSU and K. Harris, Food Science NCSU, Co-PIs Private donor $18,000 2010
Instruction of a USDA Sponsored Course: Pastureland Ecology I Matt Poore, Jean-Marie Luginbuhl NRCS, National Employee Development Center $46,492 2010
Predictors of Short-term Nitrogen Availability in Organic Farming Systems That Utilize Warm Season Cover Crops S. O'Connell SARE Graduate Student Award $10,000 2010

Multiple livestock species integrated parasite management train-the-trainer programs with on-farm, computer-based and traditional training sessions

Niki Whitley

SARE Professional Development Program (Project No. ES10-105)

$86,105

2010

2009        

To repel or kill: A population ecology approach to developing a new model for horn fly management in beef and dairy cattle systems (See project description)

B.A. Mullens, A. Gerry, D.W. Watson, J. Zhu

USDA CAR

$111,798

2009-2013

Farmer driven breeding: Addressing the needs of Southeastern organic field crop producers

S.C. Reberg-Horton, G.T. Place, T.E. Carter, M.M. Goodman, T.G. Isleib, J.P. Murphy, M. Sligh

USDA OREI

$1,174,942

2009-2012

Increasing access to "good" food for all North Carolina citizens while rebuilding a local sustainable food economy and engaging youth (See project description)

PIs include Nancy Creamer, Jennifer Curtis

W.K. Kellogg Foundation

$1,535,349

2009-2012

Research and educational support for organic dairy farming in the South (See project description)

S.P. Washburn, K.L. Anderson, G.A. Benson, M.L. Alley, S.E. Johnson

Note: Includes subcontract to University of Arkansas for $95,993; J.A. Pennington, K.M. Loftin, K.W. VanDevender, R. Rainey, D. Philipp

SARE Research and Education Project (Project No. LS09-224)

$250,000

2009-2012

Improving weed and insect management in organic reduced-tillage cropping systems

S.C. Reberg-Horton

USDA OREI

$59,000

2009-2012

Assessment of the diversity of entomopathogens in vermicomposts and their potential as biological control agents for agricultural insect pests Andrea Torres-Barragan (host PI Yasmin Cardoza) NSF minority postdoctoral fellowship $189,000 2009-2012

Evaluating vermicompost mediated host plant resistance as a sustainable alternative to manage agricultural insect pests

Yasmin J. Cardoza, PI Amos G. Little

SARE Graduate Student Project (Project No. GS09-078)

$9,810

2009-2011

Community gardening: Building community capacity, connecting with curriculum, and establishing new community and campus networks

PI J. Grossman

N.C. State University Office of Extension, Engagement & Economic Development (EEED) Seed Grant

$7,500

2009-2010

Cultural practices to improve the control of Italian Ryegrass

S.C. Reberg-Horton, R. Weisz, J.P. Murphy

N.C. Small Grain Growers Association

$3,000

2009-2010

Optimizing the roll kill/no-till system for organic soybean production

S.C. Reberg-Horton

N.C. Soybean Producers Association

$14,087

2009-2010

Stockpiled fescue for winter grazing beef cattle: A pilot educational program

M. Poore

N.C. Tobacco Trust Fund Commission

$41,723

2009-2010

Taking it Statewide: Growing Sustainable Food Systems Capacity and Outcomes Across North Carolina Nancy Creamer USDA SARE $14,950 2009

Train the trainers in community-based food systems: a project-oriented case study team approach

Nancy Creamer, Alice Ammerman, Keith Baldwin, Debbie Bost, Sarah Bowen, Blake Brown, Rudi Colleredo-Mansfield, Jennifer Curtis, Ginger Deason, Lis Driscoll, Carolyn Dunn, Bullen Gary, Natalie Hampton, Charlie Jackson, Robin Kohanowich, Danny McConnell, Roland McReynolds, Jean Mills, John O'Sullivan, Debbie Roos, William Shelton, Tes Thraves, Hillary Wilson

SARE Professional Development Program (Project No. ES09-095)

$99,266

2009

2008        

Reduced tillage in organic systems: A soil and water quality imperative (See project description)

J.P. Mueller, H. Shuijin, S.C. Reberg-Horton, C.W. Raczkowski

SARE Research and Education Project (Project No. LS08-210)

$190,000

2008-2012

Determining the realized niche of C. benghalensis by studying the effects of temperature, nutrients and light (Note: Subcontract of Commelina benghalensis: Biological, cultural and environmental factors that contribute to/limit invasion, distribution and range of this noxious weed threat to U.S. agriculture. University of Florida.)

T. Rufty

USDA NRI

$107

2008-2011

Drought response/pasture management education program

Poore, Benson, Hansen, Johnson, Turner

N.C. Rural Economic Development Center

$193,813

2008-2011

Push-pull fly management for deep bedded swine barns (See project description)

D.W. Watson, W.M. Morrow, R.M. Roe

Regional Integrated Pest Management (IPM) Competitive Grants Program – Southern Region

$97,897

2008-2011

Crop residues as emergency feeds for beef cattle

Poore, Turner, Hansen, Johnson, Alley

N.C. Agricultural Foundation

$16,279

2008-2010

Reducing tillage in organic grain production with an innovative cover crop management system

S.C. Reberg-Horton, M. Gibbs, J.P. Mueller, A. Meijer, J. Grossman, M.N. Hamilton.

USDA NRCS CIG

$249,289

2008-2010

Identification of genetic markers related to feed efficiency in beef cattle

Ashwell, Cassady, Huntington, Poore, Whisnant, Hansen

N.C. Cattlemen’s Foundation

$10,500

2008-2010

Testing the potential for compost teas for environmentally-friendly integrated pest management PI Yasmin Cardoza; Paul Mueller Co-PI USDA - Borlaug Fellowship $15,296 2008-2010

Pasture raised pork operations in North Carolina: What are the soil health costs and benefits of raising hogs outdoors? (See project description)

PI J. Grossman

N.C. Agriculture Foundation

$38,996

2008-2010

Strategies for managing risk in forage-based production systems for direct marketed beef

M. Poore

Southern Risk Management Education Center

$28,108

2008-2009

New market opportunities for farmers in North Carolina

D. Robertson, S.C. Reberg-Horton, D. Marshall, R. McReynolds

Golden LEAF Foundation

$83,000

2008-2009

New tools to make organic no-till soybeans and corn a reality

S.C. Reberg-Horton, C. Crozier, A. Meijer, M. Gibbs, D. Huber, G. Place, A. Smith

SARE On-Farm Research/Partnership Project (Project No. OS08-042)

$14,917

2008-2009

Traits of interest for improving weed suppressive ability in soybean during the critical period for weed competition

G.T. Place, S.C. Reberg-Horton

Southern Region SARE Graduate Student Grant (Project No. GS08-073)

$9,972

2008-2009

Weed management tactics for no-till organic soybean production

S.C. Reberg-Horton, G.T. Place, A. Meijer

N.C. Soybean Producers Association Inc.

$9,963

2008-2009

Potential of grafting to improve nutrient management of heirloom tomatoes on organic farms

S. O'Connell, M. Peet, F.J. Louws, C. Rivard, K. Dawson, S. Hartmann, A. Hitt

Southern Region SARE Graduate Student Grant (Project No. GS07-060)

$10,000

2008

Building North Carolina's Local Food Economy Nancy Creamer and Jennifer Curtis Agricultural Advancement Consortium of the NC Rural Center $25,000 2008
From Farm to Fork: Building a Local Food Economy in North Carolina Nancy Creamer Golden Leaf Foundation $117,550 2008
Building a Local Food Economy in North Carolina Nancy Creamer and Jennifer Curtis Z. Smith Reynolds Foundation $50,000

2008

Endowed Chair Program in Community-Based Food Systems Creamer and Maxwell (for Dean Johnny Wynne) W.K. Kellogg Foundation $1,575,000 2008
Endowment in Sustainable Agriculture, Local and Community Food Systems (to North Carolina A&T State University) John M. O'Sullivan W.K. Kellogg Foundation $1,500,000 2008
Public Health Impact of Moving Toward a Sustainable Food System in North Carolina: Informing Policy PI Ammerman (UNC) with several cooperating partners Gillings Innovation Lab

$400,000

(NCSU $74,981)
2008
Managing Farm Energy Risks in the RMA Raleigh Region Moore, Creamer Risk Management Agency grant, National Center for Appropriate Technology subcontract $14,000 2008
NC Choices Supplemental Grant Creamer and Curtis W.K. Kellogg Foundation $72,000 2008
Energy Training for Agriculture Professionals in the Southern SARE Region Moore and Creamer USDA SARE PDP, subcontract with National Center for Appropriate Technology NCSU $17,500 2008

Grafting tomatoes on disease-resistant rootstocks for small-scale organic production

S. O'Connell, M. Peet, F.J. Louws, C. Rivard

Organic Farming Research Foundation (http://ofrf.org/funded/highlights/oconnell_07f30.html)

$11,174

2008

Grafting tomatoes in multi-bay high tunnels as a way to overcome soil-borne diseases

Steve Groff, Cary Rivard

Northeast Region SARE Farmer/Rancher Project (Project No. FNE08-636)

$5,992

2008

A multi-disciplinary approach to improve the environmental performance of niche pork production systems and marketability of heritage swine breeds

Sang Oh, Dana Hanson, Morgan Morrow, Charles Raczkowski, Todd See

Southern Region SARE Research and Education Project (Project No. LS08-211)

$175,000

2008

Whole farm-level evaluation of field border vegetation effects on organic management of insect pests and weed seed banks, and on farmland wildlife (See project description)

David Orr, Chris Reberg-Horton, Chris Moorman, Yasmin Cardoza

USDA-CSREES Integrated Organic Program

$347,814

2008

2007        

Selecting cover crops for diverse functions: An integrated soil management approach for organic strawberry production in North Carolina

M.S. Schroeder-Moreno, G. Fernandez, N. Creamer, S. Bellamy, J. Iseley, K. Lee, J. Vollmer, D. Wechsler

SARE Research and Education Project (Project No. LS07-200)

$200,000

2007-2010

Combined effects of elevated N deposition and elevated carbon dioxide on mycorrhizal mediation of N acquisition and cycling by vegetation

M.S. Schroeder, S. Hu, T. Rufty

Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)

$30,234

2007-2009

Cover crop mulches for no-till organic onion production (See project description)

PI Emily Vollmer

NC Beautiful, Governor & Mrs. Dan K. Moore Fellowship

$10,000
($5,000 matched by $5,000 from NCSU CALS)

2007-2008

Organic no-till vegetable production systems in summer cover crops   NCSU Agriculture Foundation Graduate Assistantship Award $17,000 per year 2007-2008

Cover crop mulches for no-till organic onion production (See project description)

PIs Emily Vollmer, Nancy Creamer

Southern Region SARE Graduate Student Grant

$10,000

2007

The Independent Small Animal Meat Processors Association of Western North Carolina PI Smithson Mills (Creamer and Curtis as cooperators) Planning grant from the Value Added Producers Grant Program $20,000 2007

A multi-disciplinary approach to improve the environmental performance of niche pork production systems and marketability of heritage swine breeds (See project description)

Sang Hyon Oh, Dana Hanson, Morgan Morrow, Charles W. Raczkowski, Todd See, Ronaldo Vibart

SARE R&E

$219,336

2007

Center for Environmental Farming Systems Seasons of Sustainable Agriculture Education and Outreach Series

Nancy Creamer, Lisa Forehand

W.K. Kellogg Foundation

$10,000

2007

Demonstrating and supporting adoption of innovative conservation practices on outdoor hog production systems in North Carolina (See project description)

Morgan Morrow, Nancy Creamer, Jennifer Curtis

USDA NRCS, Conservation Innovation Grant

$929,900

2007

Developing a model community-based food system in Wayne County, North Carolina

Nancy Creamer, Sarah Ash, Alice Ammerman, Michelle Schroeder-Moreno, Steve Moore

NCSU Extension and Engagement

$10,000

2007

Conducting a statewide assessment for the economic and job creation potentials of developing a local food economy Creamer and Curtis NCSU Economic Development Partnership $17,000 2007

Developing an organic grain industry in North Carolina

S.C. Reberg-Horton, R.W. Heiniger, C.R. Crozier, A. Meijer, T. Kleese, L. Elworth, M.N. Hamilton

Golden Leaf Foundation

$100,000

2007

Grafting to improve organic vegetable production in field and high tunnel systems

Kleinheinz et al (Louws/Peet)

USDA – Organic

$849,072

2007

Increasing the grain supply for organic dairies in North Carolina

S.C. Reberg-Horton, M.N. Hamilton

Organic Valley

$35,502

2007

Kellogg Action Lab for resources and access to consulting services to facilitate organizational development

Nancy Creamer

 

$700

2007

National Farm to School Network Program Evaluation

Nancy Creamer, consulting role (Submitting agency: UNC Center for Health Promotion and Disease Prevention)

 

$3,000

2007

Organic dairy training conferences and educational materials for professionals (See project description)

Steven Washburn, Geoffrey Benson, Sue Ellen Johnson, Kevin Anderson, Mark Alley

SARE-PDP

$45,740

2007

Promoting on-farm energy efficiency. Subcontract to National Center for Appropriate Technology for a USDA Risk Management Agency grant

Steve Moore

 

$8,000
(NCSU share)

2007

Push-pull fly management for deep bedded swine barns (See project description)

Wes Watson, Morgan Morrow, Michael Roe

Southern IPM, CSREES

$97,000

2007

Wayne County local food initiative (See project description)

Tonya Moore, Nancy Creamer, Danielle Baptiste

Southern Region Sustainable Agriculture Working Group

Resources and consulting to facilitate community-based food systems

2007

2006        

An interdisciplinary team approach to building international collaboration in organic agriculture

J.P. Mueller, J-M. Luginbuhl, S.G. Bullen, N. Creamer, S. Kathariou, M.S. Schroeder

USDA CSREES Science and Education Resources Development (SERD) Grant

$100,000

2006-2011

Agroforestry and grazing lands conservation demonstration

J.P. Mueller, J-M. Luginbuhl, F. Cubbage

USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service

$102,000

2006-2010

Pasture Pork 101: Comprehensive agent training in pasture-based hog production

Todd See, Susan Mellage, Sarah Morgan

Southern Region SARE Professional Development Program (Project No. ES06-083)

$62,500

2006-2008

Opportunities for pasture-raised Jersey beef in the Southeast (See project description)

S.P. Washburn, M. Day, D. Hanson, V. Fellner, J. Peterson, M. Poore

USDA Southern Region SARE Program – On-Farm Research

$14,952

2006-2008

Developing an Organic Grain Industry in North Carolina

S.C. Reberg-Horton, R.W. Heiniger, C.R. Crozier, P.R. Weisz, A. Meijer, M.G. Burton, M.N. Hamilton

Office of Extension, Engagement, and Economic Development, N.C. State University

$9,615

2006

Developing an organic grain industry in North Carolina

S.C. Reberg-Horton, R.W. Heiniger, C.R. Crozier, A. Meijer, M.G. Burton, P.R. Weisz, T. Kleese, L. Elworth, M.N. Hamilton

Golden LEAF Foundation

$150,000

2006

Fostering organic grain production in North Carolina

S.C. Reberg-Horton, C.R. Crozier, M.G. Burton, R.W. Heiniger, P.R. Weisz, J.P. Murphy, M.N. Hamilton, G.L. Ambrose

N.C. Agricultural Foundation

$59,256

2006

Grafting rootstocks onto heirloom and locally adapted tomato selections to confer resistance to root-knot nematodes and other soilbourne diseases and to increase nutrient uptake efficiency in an intensive farming system for market gardeners

M. Peet, F.J. Louws

 

$193,000

2006

2005        

Microarray analysis and functional assays to assess microbial ecology and disease suppression in soils under organic or sustainable management (See project description)

Frank Louws, Shuijin Hu, Paul Mueller

SARE Research and Education Project (Project No. LS05-173)

$250,000

2005-2009

Sustainability indicators as management tools to guide farmers, scientists, policy makers and the general public (See project description)

PIs Wossink, Brownie, Mueller, O'Sullivan

Southern Region SARE

$250,000

2005-2008

Working Together to Strengthen North Carolina's Agricultural Future Lead PI Creamer with co-PIs Monaco, Kleese (Carolina Farm Stewardship Association), Marlow (Rural Advancement Foundation International), Hamrick (NC Farm Bureau) Institute of Conservation Leadership $4,000 2005-2006
Working Together to Strengthen North Carolina's Agricultural Future Lead PI Creamer with co-PIs Monaco, Kleese (Carolina Farm Stewardship Association), Marlow (Rural Advancement Foundation International), Hamrick (NC Farm Bureau) Institute of Conservation Leadership $4,000 2005-2006

Transitioning to an organic pasture-based dairy-beef production system (See project description)

S.P. Washburn, E.A. Coite, M.H. Poore, J.T. Green, Jr., D.J. Hanson, M.A. Drake

N.C. Extension IPM Program

$13,528

2005-2006

Direct market training for agricultural professionals

S. Gary Bullen

Southern Region SARE Professional Development Program

$96,757

2005

Inducing disease resistance and increased production in organic heirloom tomato production through grafting

C. Rivard, F.J. Louws

Southern SARE (graduate student competition)

$10,000

2005

Proposal to Fund a Grantee Networking Gathering PI Creamer W.K. Kellogg Foundation $17,211 2005
Evaluation of Cover Crops in Conservation Tillage for Organic Production Systems PI Creamer with graduate student Treadwell SARE $14,608 2005

Reducing off-farm grain inputs on northeast organic dairy farms

S.C. Reberg-Horton, D.P. Marcinkowski, J.M. Halloran, T.S. Griffin, E.R. Gallandt, J.M. Jemison, R. Kersbergen, M.R. Stokes, G.W. Anderson, C.G. Schwab, P.S. Erickson

CSREES Integrated Organic Program

$827,274

2005

Using cover crops and crop diversity to optimize ecologically-based weed management

W.S. Curran, D.A. Mortensen, M.E. Barbercheck, T.S. Hoover, A.G. Hulting, R.J. Hoover, S.C. Reberg-Horton, E.R. Gallandt

SARE Program

$98,000

2005

2004        
SANREM CRSP III. Field Based Systems (Sustainable Agriculture and Natural Resource Management -- Cooperative Research Program) Lead NC State PI Mueller with co-PI Creamer US AID $60,000 2004-2006

Can sorghum sudangrass grown as a summer cover crop for organic no-till vegetable production double as a cash crop for the organic hay market? (See project description)

Denise McKinney, Nancy Creamer, Michael Wagger

Organic Farming Research Foundation

$6,155

2004

Development of effective on-farm beneficial insect habiat for improved insect pest management (See project description)

David Orr, Mike Linker

NCDA PETF

$84,645

2004

A Proposal for Collaboration between NC State and HASNA: A Training Initiative at CEFS for Turkish Agriculture Professionals Lead PI Mueller with co-PI Creamer HASNA $39,908 2004

N2-fixation and weed competition: breaking the connection between crops and weeds (See project description)

PIs Michael Burton, Nancy Creamer, Tom Rufty

SARE Research and Education Grant: LS04-158

$248,000

2004

Partnership with the public: An alternative food systems model for swine in North Carolina (See project description)

PIs Nancy Creamer, Michael Schulman, Sarah Ash

W.K. Kellogg Foundation

$600,000

2004

Evaluation of beneficial insect habitat for organic farms (See project description)

PI David Orr

SARE Research and Education Grant: LS04-161

 

2004

2003        

Examining pasture-based dairy systems to optimize profitability, environmental impact, animal health and milk quality (See project description)

S.P. Washburn, G.A. Benson, J.A. Bertrand, J.H. Fike, J.T. Green, Jr., G.E. Groover, T.C. Jenkins, K.E. Saker

USDA Southern Region SARE Program

$226,903

2003-2006

Evaluation of beneficial insect habitat for organic farms (See project description)

Lisa Forehand, David Orr, Mike Linker

Southern Region SARE Graduate Student Award

$10,000

2003

A national model for agroecology instruction (See project description)

PIs H. Michael Linker, J. Paul Mueller, Nancy Creamer

USDA Higher Education Challenge Grant

$100,000

2003

Farmer research education program

S.C. Reberg-Horton, S. Seiter

SARE Program

$141,471

2003

Natural areas of vegetation and their influence on weed populations in neighboring fields (See project description)

Susan Jelinek, J. Paul Mueller, Nancy Creamer, Michael Burton, Cavell Brownie

Southern Region SARE Graduate Student Award

$10,000

2003

Reaching out to NC Extension Agents and Farmers via the Research Triangle Park Multi-farm Community Supported Agriculture CSA Initiative Lead PI Nartea, co-PIs Creamer and Ranells Small Farm Program $8,000 2003

Threshold-based cover cropping strategies for weed management

E.R. Gallandt, S.C. Reberg-Horton, E.B. Mallory, W.S. Curran, D.A. Mortensen, M.E. Barbercheck, R.J. Hoover

CSREES Northeastern Region IPM

$174,989

2003

2002        

An efficient nutrient management tool for animal waste (See project description)

Keith Baldwin, Noah Ranells

Animal and Poultry Waste Management Center

 

2002

Survey of Organic Grain/Feed Supply in the Southern Region PI Creamer USDA Agriculture Marketing Service $20,000 2002

Biological fitness and productivity in range-based systems comparing standard turkey varieties and inudstrial stocks (See project description)

Paul Mueller, Jean-Marie Luginbuhl, Matt Poore
(Lead: Don Bixby, American Livestock Breeds Conservancy)

Southern Region SARE

$1,700
(NCSU share)

2002

Developing an alternative food systems model and implementation plan for swine in North Carolina (See project description)

PIs Nancy Creamer, Michael Schulman, Sarah Ash, with approximately 25 additional cooperators representing many departments at NCSU and NCA&TSU, NGOs, government agencies, farmer groups and farmers

W.K. Kellogg Foundation

$100,000

2002

Herbivore host choice and impact on seven Physalis species (See project description)

Melanie Bateman, Nicole Benda, Fred Gould

NSF Pre-doctoral Fellowship

 

2002

2001        
Evaluation of Cover Crops and Conservation Tillage for Conventional and Organic Sweetpotato Production in North Carolina PI Creamer with co-PI Schultheis NC Agriculture Foundation Annual Assistantship Award $17,627 per year 2001-2005
Using Animal Waste for Horticultural Compost Production PI Ranells, Co-PIs Creamer, Baldwin, Green NC Agriculture Foundation, Annual Assistantship Award $17,459 per year 2001-2004
Developing and Evaluating Vegetable Conservation Tillage Systems at the Center for Environmental Farming Systems PI Creamer NC Agriculture Foundation, Annual Assistantship Award $17,123 per year 2001-2004

Assessment of flood impacts on agricultural soils (See project description)

Paul Mueller, Mary Barbercheck, Melissa Bell, Cavell Brownie, Michael Casteel, Nancy Creamer, Shuijin Hu, H. Mike Linker, Frank Louws, Michael Wagger

N.C. Agriculture Foundation

$147,000

2001

Breeding a better cover crop: A screen of rye germplasm for weed suppression and nitrogen scavenging (See project description)

Chris Reberg-Horton, Nancy Creamer, Noah Ranells

Southern Region SARE Graduate Student Award

$10,000

2001

Integrated management of pasture flies for beef and dairy cattle in North Carolina (See project description)

Wes Watson, Mike Stringham, Matt Poore, Jim Green, Steve Washburn

USDA, CSREES, Integrated Pest Management Grants Program, Southern Region

$95,014

2001

Revitalizing farms and communities through high value organic production: Demonstration, education, and marketing (See project description)

Nancy Creamer, Noah Ranells, Theresa Nartea

Golden LEAF Foundation, Inc.

$127,000 (2001)

$77,000 (2002)

2001

Long-term, large-scale systems research directed at agricultural sustainability (See project description)

Paul Mueller, Nancy Creamer, Mike Linker, Frank Louws, Mary Barbercheck, Cavell Brownie, Michael Wagger, Michele Marra, Shuijin Hu, Charles Raczkowski, Joan Ristaino

SARE

$230,000

2001

2000        

Diversity and activities of soil microflora and mesofauna: Influence on soilborne pathogenic fungi (See project description)

Shuiji Hu

USDA NRI

$214,000

2000

Evaluation of cover crops and conservation tillage for conventional and organic sweetpotato production in North Carolina (See project description)

Danielle Treadwell, Nancy Creamer

Southern Region SARE Graduate Student Award

$9,927

2000

Impact of agricultural systems on soil quality ans sustainability (See project description)

PIs Mary Barbercheck, Frank Louws, Steve Koenning, Michael Wagger, Charles Raczkowski

Southern Region SARE

$191,000

2000

Interactions between predators and insect-parasitic nematodes in soil (See project description)

Marie Newman, Mary Barbercheck

SARE Graduate Student Award

$10,000

2000

Training in alternative research strategies for sustainable farming systems (See project description)

Keith Baldwin, Scott Marlow, Noah Ranells, Frank Louws, Nancy Creamer

SARE PDP

$101,700

2000

Revitalizing small and mid-sized farms: Organic research, education, and extension (See project description)

Frank Louws, Nancy Creamer, Mike Linker, Mary Barbercheck, Shuijin Hu, Ada Wossink, Steve Koenning, Micheal Wagger, Cavell Brownie (with Ohio State University, Iowa State University, Tufts University, Organic Farming Research Foundation)

USDA IFAFS

$499,117
(NCSU share of $1.8 million)

2000

Impact of Cover Crop and Nitrogen Rate on Weeds co-PIs Wagger, Monks, Baldwin, and O'Farrell Extension IPM grant (research-based) $7,207 2000
Developing Web Resources for Sustainable Agriculture Lead PI Creamer and cooperator Kleese University Extension Grant (Cooperative project with Carolina Farm Stewardship Association) $15,000 2000
1999        
Development of a Method for Estimating Potato Yield Losses Associated with Improper Seedpiece Placement and Seedpiece Decay Disease Lead PI Cubeta with co-PI Creamer NC Agriculture Foundation Assistantship Award $38,194 1999-2001

Developing an intensive summer internship program in sustainable agricultural systems (See project description)

Nancy Creamer, Keith Baldwin, Mike Linker, Paul Mueller

Z. Smith Reynolds Foundation amd USDA Higher Education Challenge Grant

$96,605

1999

Strategies for transition to organic farming systems (See project description)

PIs Nancy Creamer, Paul Mueller, Michael Wagger, Michele Marra, David Monks, Mary Barbercheck, Frank Louws, Cavell Brownie, Ada Wossink, Steve Koenning

USDA-NRI Agriculture Systems

$380,000

1999

Reducing Chemical Use through the use of Cover Crops in no-till Vegetable Production Systems PI Creamer NC Agriculture Foundation $3,450 1999
1998        
Enhancing Weed Suppression by Cover Crops in No-Till Vegetable Production Systems PI Creamer Agriculture Foundation Annual Assistantship Award $15,127 per year 1998-2000

A model for long-term, large-scale systems research directed toward agricultural sustainability (See project description)

PIs Paul Mueller, Nancy Creamer, Mike Linker, Frank Louws, Michael Wagger, George Wilson, Cavell Brownie. Cooperators: Mary Barbercheck, Carlyle Franklin, Charles Rzkowski, Larry King, Michele Marra, Ada Wossink, Matt Poore, Steve Washburn

SARE

$256,604

1998

Meeting the Information Needs for Farm Communities in Transition Lead PI Creamer with co-PIs Louws and Baldwin Z. Smith Reynolds Foundation $7,600 1998

Use of a constructed wetlands to remove nitrogen and phosphorus from pumped shallow groundwater (See project description)

PIs R.O. Evans, D. Osmond Clean Water Management Trust Fund   1998
1997        

Building capacity in sustainable agriculture: A comprehensive training program in organic farming systems for cooperative extension agents, specialists, and other educators (See project description)

PIs Nancy Creamer, Frank Louws, George Wilson, with 26 faculty from NCSU and NCA&TSU participating in the training

SARE PDP

$97,500

1997

Effect of predators on entomopathogenic nematodes (See project description)

PI Mary Barbercheck

USDA NRI

$78,569

1997

Grazing management training to enhance the sustainability of pasture based beef production systems (See project description)

PIs Jim Green, Matt Poore

SARE Professional Development Program

$31,759

1997

Implementation, evaluation, and demonstration of riparian buffer and controlled drainage BMPs to reduce the impacts of animal production on water quality in the Neuse River Basin (See project description)

PIs Robert Evans, Wendell Gilliam, Greg Jennings, Steve Washburn, Jim Green, Matt Poore

EPA 319(h) funding through NCDWQ

$194,763

1997

Meeting the Information Needs for Farm Communities in Transition Lead PI Creamer with co-PIs Louws and Baldwin Z. Smith Reynolds Foundation $27,500 1997

Interactions between native and introduced entomopathogenic nematodes (See project description)

PI Mary Barbercheck

USDA NRI

$116,283

1997

Woodlot forestry research and development program level spreaders on conservation tillage unit (See project description)

PIs Carlyle Franklin, Dennis Hazel

US EPA, 319

$83,000

1997

Addressing Potato Stand Establishment Problems in NE North Carolina Lead PI Creamer, co-PIs Cubeta, Crozier NC Agriculture Foundation Grant $3,275 1997
No-till Broccoli: Impact of Cover Crop and Nitrogen Rate on IPM and other Crop Production Factors Creamer PI with Wagger, Monks, Baldwin, and O'Farrell Extension IPM grant (research-based) $6,749 1997
Establishment of a Weather Based Advisory System for Predicting Potato Late Blight in Eastern North Carolina Lead PI Cubeta, project cooperator with several ag agents in eastern NC NC Cooperative Extension Service Equipment Enhancement Funds $12,500 1997
1996        
Using Cover Crops to Enhance IPM in Vegetable Production Systems Lead PI Creamer with Rayburn, Campbell, and Haines Extension IPM $5,760 1996
Evaluating Potato Stand Establishment Problems in NE North Carolina PI Creamer NC Agriculture Foundation $3,066 1996
1995        
An Evaluation of Summer Cover Crops as Weed Suppressive Mulches PI Creamer Organic Farming Research Foundation $4,688 1995
Potato Health Management in North Carolina Lead PI Cubeta with co-PI Creamer Faculty Outreach and Professional Development Grants Program $5,000 1995

 

Quantifying the Multiplier Effect: What Sustainable Local Food Systems Can Mean to Local Communities. 2012-2015. D. Marticorena, N. Creamer (NCSU),  J. O’Sullivan (NCA&TSU), D. Swenson (Iowa State), D. Hughes (Clemson). SARE Project # LS12-248. $211,000.

The purpose of this project is to quantitatively evaluate using a Social Accounting Matrix Framework how producers and local communities are impacted differently by the sales of either locally produced/processed foods or those imported from other regions. In addition, we will study the variety of ways different socio-economic groups are impacted by local agriculture and how that affects the economy as a whole.  For the purposes of this project we will be defining local as originating/being processed within North Carolina. In order for communities to grow in a way that ensures their long-term economic viability and sustainability, a number of wide ranging and often-conflicting factors must be appropriately managed.   The method of analysis we will use is able to consider these opposing factors and determine how to make North Carolina Agriculture the strongest both now and in the future through local agriculture.

There is a great deal of talk these days as to whether the idea of “local foods,” and more broadly, “local agriculture,” can benefit the producers of North Carolina.  On one hand studies have shown that participating in local agriculture helps producers retain more of the profits generated by their crops; on the other hand many local agriculture markets currently have limited demand (both by consumers as well as institutions such as schools, hospitals, and prisons) and so many medium to large scale farmers are not able to sell the bulk of their produce in this way.  Furthermore, because of the fact that local agriculture sales tend to keep money more so within the county than more diverse sales, there may be benefits to the local community that are not reflected in the economics as it is traditionally measured.  

In this study we will develop a Social Accounting Matrix that is realistic for the North Carolina Economy today and can be used to quantify the opportunity for growth within the agricultural sector. Data sets currently available (i.e. the IMPLAN database released by MIG Inc.) for this purpose are largely derived from National and State Level data through linear adjustments based upon population differences, a methodology that is sure to ignore systematic regional differences important to agriculture that may exist.  We intend to collect financial data from our participants for the purposes of amending the agricultural sector of currently available data to make it consistent with real world conditions today as well as to be able to reasonably project different possible growth scenarios of the NC agricultural industry going forward.   The findings of this project will both be used as a policy tool at the level of regional and state governments as well as an educational aid to inform the greater community on the marginal impacts of different modes of agriculture. 

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Assessing The Greenhouse Gas Mitigation Potential Of Organic Systems In The Southeast. 2012-2015. Hu, Shuijin; Reberg-Horton, S. Chris; Robarge, Wayne, P; Schroeder-Moreno, Michelle, S.; Grossman, Julie, M.; Cardoza, Yasmin; Everman, Wesley, J.. USDA NIFA. $734,802.

The long-term goal of this integrated research, education and extension project is to understand the impact of organic systems in the Southeastern US on greenhouse gas emissions and educate stakeholders and students about maximizing the mitigation potential of these systems.  Our supporting objectives are to 1) investigate how organic systems affect soil carbon (C) and nitrogen (N) dynamics and greenhouse gas emissions, 2) examine how tillage practices and cover crops can be integrated to enhance C sequestration and reduce N2O emissions, and 3) educate next generation of organic researchers and farmers through student training and various outreach activities.

We propose that organic systems with reduced tillage may provide the best opportunities to increase soil C sequestration and reduce soil N2O emission in the sandy soils of the warm and humid Southeastern USA. Our central hypothesis is that integration of high organic matter inputs and reduced tillage is the key to tighten C and N cycles and reduce N2O emission.We plan to utilize three certified organic systems and three parallel conventional systems at our existing long-term site at Goldsboro, NC to conduct a series of field experiments to quantify the CO2 and N2O emissions and to identify potential mechanisms underlying the C and N stabilization in soil.  We also plan to develop new curricula on greenhouse gases and agriculture for student training and stakeholders. Outcomes of this project would provide essential data necessary for developing organic practices that reduce soil N2O emissions while increasing C sequestration.

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Evaluating the potential of winter cover crops for carbon sequestration in degraded soils transitioning to organic production. 2011-2013. J. Grossman, Shuijin Hu, W. Shi, G. Reddy. USDA Integrated Organics Program. $650,000.

There is a critical need for information about how the effects of organic agriculture, specifically cover crop combinations, are quantified when assessments for carbon sequestration are employed to determine associated incentive payments. This project will strengthen organic production in the long term by providing information about how to best manage cover crop residue in Southern climates during the transition process to retain and protect recently added carbon. As policy makers move in the direction of recognizing and subsidizing carbon as a key indicator of environmental services it is important to develop scientific datasets to support organic farms as leaders in this capacity. This project joins together Southeastern U.S. leaders in organic agriculture research, including N.C. State University (NCSU), the Center for Environmental Farming Systems (CEFS) and N.C. Agricultural & Technical State University (NCA&T) to respond to farmer concerns about soil carbon sequestration through a fully integrated research-, education- and extension-based project. The primary long-term goals of this project are to (1) evaluate common and novel cover crops for their potential to contribute to soil organic matter development to develop tools for conservation planners to quickly identify beneficial practices for transitioning organic farmers, and (2) develop models for educating agricultural stakeholders, future extension leaders (students), and low-income urban populations about the benefits and challenges of cover-crop use. To meet the first goal, the researchers will study the contribution of cover crop plant biomass additions to soil carbon by investigating the microbial processes controlling both decomposition and stabilization of added carbon. To meet the second goal, they will use a multi-tier outreach approach to disseminate the information produced by the proposed research. Specific outreach efforts include (1) hosting two traditional face-to-face workshops and training opportunities for farmers, organic educators and NRCS personnel, with particular emphasis placed on small and limited-resource farmers in the Southeast, (2) developing and piloting five cover crop teaching lessons for low-income urban populations using urban gardens to increase food security, and (3) designing two academic components including an upper-level “Climate Change & Agriculture” course and a unique extension training program for graduate students, the Young Extension Professionals (YEP) program. The goal of YEP is to train effective extension personnel and farmer communicators following completion of their academic program.

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To repel or kill: A population ecology approach to developing a new model for horn fly management in beef and dairy cattle systems. 2009-2013. USDA Crops at Risk (CAR) grant. B.A. Mullens, A. Gerry, D.W. Watson, J. Zhu. $111,798.

This 36-month USDA-CAR proposal incorporates both research and demonstration aspects, novel technologies and new assessment methodology into pasture fly management for cattle production systems. As a minor pesticide user, the cattle industry (dairy and beef) has few newly registered insecticides, while there have been remarkable advances in the identification of novel natural repellents for the protection of humans. We will evaluate and help develop the first insect repellents for the livestock industry reliant on naturally occurring compounds. Laboratory and field studies suggest medium chain length saturated fatty acids (C8-C10) and the plant-derived compound geraniol may suppress horn flies. Past studies relied solely on numbers of horn flies on cattle, but we will utilize changes in fly population age structure, survivorship data, fecundity, and blood feeding rates, and incorporate cattle fly defense behaviors to measure irritation. Negative (nothing) and positive (permethrin) controls will be used with small cattle herds over 9-week intervals with 3 discrete time periods: pretreatment, treatment, and posttreatment. Untreated animals in each herd will serve both as a fly sink and source. Adjunct laboratory studies will study contact versus distance repellency as a function of dose and time. The studies will allow us to examine treatment-related fly movement relevant to the eventual development of a push-pull strategy, contributing to improved management of the horn fly, Haematobia irritans, a key pest for pastured cattle. It will serve as a model for future evaluation of other livestock fly pests. 

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Increasing access to "good" food for all North Carolina citizens while rebuilding a local sustainable food economy and engaging youth. 2009-2012. W.K. Kellogg Foundation. PIs include Nancy Creamer, Jennifer Curtis. $1,535,349.

The purpose of this project is to develop partnerships and create institutional change by increasing access to healthy, green, fair and affordable food within all communities and addressing the needs of vulnerable youth and their families.

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Research and educational support for organic dairy farming in the South. 2009-2012. USDA Southern Region SARE Research and Education Project. S.P. Washburn, K.L. Anderson, G.A. Benson, M.L. Alley, S.E. Johnson. $250,000. (Note: Includes a subcontract to University of Arkansas for $95,993; J.A. Pennington, K.M. Loftin, K.W. VanDevender, R. Rainey, D. Philipp.)

The purpose of this project is to provide research and educational support for organic or transitioning dairy farms in the South. Problems facing producers during transition from conventional to organic dairying include maintaining cash flow during transition, costs and availability of organic feed, alternative control of parasitic and premise flies, control of forage pests, learning how to treat cows without antibiotics, control of *weeds*, and getting cows pregnant without use of hormonal treatments.

Specifically, evaluation of herds that have successfully transitioned from conventional dairy production to organic dairying will help define current needs as well as identify factors that allowed those producers to be successful. Controlled studies will also be conducted to determine efficacy of alternative approaches to control external parasites, treat or prevent mastitis, enhance reproductive efficiency, and to evaluate pasture management practices applicable to current and prospective organic dairy farms in the South. We also plan to investigate current and future potential markets for organic dairy products in the southern states.

The price of organic milk paid to producers remains stable throughout the year, and the stability of organic pricing also is important in that it allows for greater financial planning compared to conventional milk which has wide fluctuations in prices. Because of the price stability with organic milk, it is expected that many, perhaps most, new dairy producers will enter the organic market. Overall, organic dairy farming has potential to have an economic impact of greater than $1 billion per year in the southern states.

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Push-pull fly management for deep bedded swine barns. 2008-2011. Regional Integrated Pest Management (IPM) Competitive Grants Program – Southern Region. D.W. Watson, W.M. Morrow, R.M. Roe. $97,897.

State and federal agencies and the swine industry are investigating alternatives to liquid-based waste handling systems to minimize the impact of animal agriculture on air and water quality. Europe has taken the lead in developing alternative swine production systems, including growing pigs on deep-bedded open floors allowing the pigs to move freely about the building. As the pigs become accustomed to the housing, separate resting and dunging areas become established. These dunging areas are breeding sites for filth flies, particularly the house fly, lesser house fly, and stable fly, each recognized as economic and nuisance pests. Our proposed research study is focused on integrated pest management in open-floor-dry bedding swine production. The goal of this project is to document and demonstrate push-pull pest management strategies to minimize the severity of filth fly infestation in a dry-bedding waste management system.

This is a research project is designed to employ a stimulo-deterrent diversionary strategy (SDDS) or Push-pull strategy (PPS) to manage arthropod pests. PPS has been successfully used in a variety of integrated cropping systems, including onions and cotton. The concept relies on the manipulation of the pest by applying pressures to induce behavioral changes that result in less damage to the crop. PPS uses a variety of compounds including repellents, oviposition deterrents, and antifeedants to push the pest away from the crop. PPS couples these agents with others that pull the pests toward an unsuitable crop. The latter may be pheromones, attractants, and feeding stimulants often in the form of a trap crop. Application of PPS may have utility in the management of pests in animal agriculture. We propose the use of plant derived insect repellents, geraniol and an entomopathogenic fungus, Beauveria bassiana for the control of house flies and stable flies in alternative swine production systems.

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Reduced tillage in organic systems: A soil and water quality imperative. 2008-2010. Southern Region SARE Research and Education Project. J.P. Mueller, H. Shuijin, S.C. Reberg-Horton, and C.W. Raczkowski. $190,000.

This project is designed to examine effects of organic weed management on crop productivity and soil and water quality variables. Two fundamentally different approaches are being attempted by North Carolina farmers: a conventional tillage, cultivation intensive approach, and a reduced tillage system utilizing weed suppressive cover crops and mulches. When surveyed and in focus groups organic farmers cite weed pests as their most serious and intractable problem. Current weed management strategies in organic production systems are centered on cultivation. This has been shown to be effective in many cases, but loss of soil carbon, the importance of particulate organic matter fraction and the potential for soil erosion and water quality issues must be addressed if organic grain systems are to be sustainable.

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Pasture raised pork operations in North Carolina: What are the soil health costs and benefits of raising hogs outdoors? 2008-2010. N.C. Agriculture Foundation. PI J. Grossman. $38,996.

The national market for all-natural pork has developed more quickly than the pasture-raised swine operation siting and management guidelines. Much of this pork is raised in the Southeast. Subsequently, many of these outdoor operations have been developed with little consideration given to the potential environmental damage that can occur when proper management is not followed. This enterprise has been popular with small, limited resource and family farms. Recent research shows that pigs raised outdoors can be extremely destructive of vegetation and contribute to significant soil loss, nutrient build-up, leaching and run-off if not managed properly. Our research will evaluate soil nutrient distribution during the grow-out stage (finishing, topping) of pasture-raised swine operations using a static feeding/watering/shelter structure treatment and compare it to a rotational structure treatment to determine if nutrient distribution can be improved. We will evaluate vegetation destruction in each treatment to determine if previously accepted stocking densities are sustainable in realistic outdoor pasture raised swine operations. Our goal is to develop environmentally sustainable practices that are practical and useful for the farmers in the southern United States, nationally and internationally who want to raise swine outdoors in a way that will minimize damage to the environment, be socially acceptable, as well as produce a profit that will support their family farms.

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Microarray analysis and functional assays to assess microbial ecology and disease suppression in soils. 2005-2009. Southern Region SARE Research and Education Project. PIs F.J. Louws, Shuijin Hu, J. Paul Mueller in cooperation with J-Z. Zhou (Oakridge National Lab, Tennessee). $250,000.

There is a need to characterize soil microbial communities and understand (and ideally manage) the links between microbial community structure/diversity to ecological function. Fundamental ecological functions consistent with our expertise include nutrient cycling, plant disease suppression, and plant growth promoting effects as mediated by soil microbes. In our SARE-funded farming systems experiments, we archived soils at the start of the long-term experiment (baseline samples, Spring 1999) and at each sampling date (~4/yr). Corresponding soil samples have been analyzed by soil scientists, microbial ecologists, entomologists, and nematologists, providing a fairly comprehensive analysis of the samples. Our archived soils represent an irreplaceable repository and resource to ask fundamental questions about the impact of farming systems on microbial communities. Parallel to this opportunity, is the need to develop methods and knowledge about the mechanisms and links between these communities and impacts on plant health. Therefore, the objectives of this proposal are: (1) to utilize micro-array technology to assess structure and function of microbial communities associated with nutrient cycling and (hopefully) disease suppression. Baseline soil samples will be compared to fresh samples to be collected in 2005 to ascertain the impact of selected farming systems on microbial communities; (2) to elucidate mechanisms of disease suppression in long term SARE organic and farming systems projects. Soils from the different farming systems will be sampled, analyzed, and manipulated to discover components that contribute to disease suppression (primarily plant pathogen invasion and colonization); and 3) to develop functional plant assay(s) to assess plant disease suppressive mechanisms and plant growth promoting effects. These objectives seek to link knowledge about the soils, microbial communities, soil borne pathogen fitness, and plant response as impacted by long-term farming systems and management of “soil health”. We believe component research as proposed here can be translated into practical recommendations and knowledge that will serve our clientele and goals to enhance the objectives of a sustainable agriculture.

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Sustainability indicators as management tools to guide farmers, scientists, policy makers and the general public. 2005-2008. Southern Region SARE. PIs Wossink, Brownie, Mueller and O'Sullivan. $250,000.

At CEFS we have a unique systems experiment where we have collected a wide range of parameters since 1998. Using these data as a starting point, we seek to develop an approach to relate our data back to the guiding concept of agricultural sustainability. C rucial to our approach is that the development and selection of sustainability indicators needs to be integrated with the research of improved farming systems and with input from farmers and other stakeholders. The proposed project will enable an integrated evaluation of all the data collected at CEFS and is a logical step toward the assessment of sustainability of the various agricultural systems under study. A comprehensive list of attributes of economic, social and ecological sustainability will first be identified and then ranked by using the perceptions of different stakeholders and experts. Data collected at CEFS will be used to quantify the selected indicators. Next, graphical and numerical comparisons will be employed for an overall assessment and evaluation that can be adapted to natural conditions and socio-institutional constraints. Additional co-operators in this project: Carolina Farm Stewardship Association, Rural Advancement Foundation International and a farmer panel.

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Whole farm-level evaluation of field border vegetation effects on organic management of insect pests and weed seed banks, and on farmland wildlife. 2008. USDA-CSREES Integrated Organic Program, David Orr, Chris Reberg-Horton, Chris Moorman, Yasmin Cardoza. $347,814.

The purpose of this project is to evaluate a range of field border habitat types for their value to insect and weed pest management within crop fields, as well as their value to on-farm wildlife. The objectives of this proposal help to fill gaps in our knowledge about how best to implement field border habitats to enhance beneficial insects, wildlife, and management of pest insects and weeds by making use of on-farm populations of beneficial organisms (both insects and birds). We will examine the effect of different types of border habitat plantings on the beneficial insect communities they harbor, and the effect of these communities on insect as well as weed management in adjacent crops. We will assess the value of the border habitats as cover and a food resource for quail. In addition, we will examine the arthropod diets of songbirds that move between the borders and crop fields to assess the value of these habitats, and the potential contribution of early successional songbirds to insect management in adjacent crops. An advisory group of organic growers, extension personnel, and a crop consultant has been assembled in order to direct this project from the beginning towards a practical product that growers will use on their farms. Although we are using an organic farming production system for this project, the outcomes should be applicable to a wider array of cropping, because we are targeting field border vegetation outside of crop fields.

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Opportunities for pasture-raised Jersey beef in the Southeast. 2006-2008. USDA Southern Region SARE Program – On-Farm Research. S.P. Washburn, M. Day, D. Hanson, V. Fellner, J. Peterson, M. Poore. $14,952.

Jersey and Jersey-Holstein steers were finished on pasture or using concentrates for 84 days before harvest. Data were collected on 44 steers over 2 years. Steers were harvested at similar ages regardless of weight. Fatty acid profiles differed and concentrate-fed animals had more fat. Taste panel evaluations of loin samples included comparison with choice beef. Taste panel preferences averaged 39.6%, 37.5%, and 21.9% for choice beef, concentrate-fed Jersey beef, and pasture-fed Jersey beef, respectively. The cooperating farmer projected a net return of about $1,000 per head for pasture-fed steers indicating potential for profitable beef enterprises using Jersey or Jersey-Holstein steers.

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Cover crop mulches for no-till organic onion production. 2007-2008. N.C. Beautiful, Governor and Mrs. Dan K. Moore Fellowship. PI Emily Vollmer. 10,000 ($5,000 matched by $5,000 from NCSU CALS).

Cover crop mulches for no-till organic onion production. 2007. Southern Region SARE Graduate Student Grant. PIs Emily Vollmer and Nancy Creamer. $10,000.

The purpose of this project is to expand the knowledge base informing sustainable agricultural practices, especially helping organic vegetable growers increase soil conservation with strategic use of cover crops. This project addresses three key challenges for organic, reduced-tillage vegetable production. First, selecting summer cover crops that winter kill eliminates the challenge of mechanically killing the cover crop. Second, we are evaluating quantity and timing of nitrogen release from both the cover crops and organic amendment nitrogen during over-wintered vegetable production. Third, we are evaluating the weed control potential of the different cover crop residues and the amount of labor required for additional weed management. This is a systems-level experiment that will demonstrate the interactions of many aspects of sustainable vegetable production in the southeastern United States.

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A multi-disciplinary approach to improve the environmental performance of niche pork production systems and marketability of heritage swine breeds. 2007. SARE Research and Education Grant. Sang Hyon Oh, Dana Hanson, Morgan Morrow, Charles W. Raczkowski, Todd See, Ronaldo Vibart. $219,336.

This project will investigate niche pork production systems that address market demands and natural resource conservation concerns, with a specific focus on maximizing vegetative ground cover and nutrient distribution in pastures and understanding marketability of heritage breeds produced in alternative production systems. Several wholesale buyers are offering North Carolina growers twice the current market price to supply this demand. This represents an important opportunity for small-scale, limited resource farmers across the southeast. The majority of niche pork buyers require that pigs be raised outdoors on pasture or in deep-bedded hoop barn systems. In the case of North Carolina's outdoor production systems, most operations are not sustainable if one evaluates nutrient loading, soil loss, and water quality impacts. Natural Resource Conservation Service (NRCS) planners recognize the near total lack of information available to guide them in developing conservation plans that addresses resource concerns on outdoor swine farms across the southeast. Lastly, consumer interest in heritage breed pork continues to rise however little is known about taste characteristics and production potential in alternative systems.

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Demonstrating and supporting adoption of innovative conservation practices on outdoor hog production systems in North Carolina. 2007. USDA NRCS, Conservation Innovation Grant. Morgan Morrow, Nancy Creamer, Jennifer Curtis. $929,900.

In response to growing consumer demand and increased production of outdoor-raised (marketed as “pasture-raised”) pork in North Carolina, this project will demonstrate and evaluate a comprehensive set of innovative conservation practices on outdoor hog production systems throughout three distinct regions of the State—the Mountains, Piedmont and Coastal Plain—that represent major production characteristics and soil types throughout the Southeast. Through the oversight of a technical steering committee, model farms, and demonstration sites will be established to demonstrate and evaluate the effectiveness, environmental impacts and economic implications of implementing different conservation practices on outdoor hog production systems. Farmer participants will be supported to maintain comprehensive records, engage in project planning, and host outreach and educational events, including field days, training workshops, and informal gatherings. Regional support teams will be developed that include farmer mentors, District Conservationists, and extension agents as a means of increasing the likelihood of adoption of conservation practices, and specifically utilization of EQIP, particularly on small and limited resource farms. A variety of deliverables will be developed, including a technical guidance document for use by NRCS staff and District Conservationists to foster expansion of EQIP to outdoor hog production systems.

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Organic dairy training conferences and educational materials for professionals. 2007. SARE-PDP, Steven Washburn, Geoffrey Benson, Sue Ellen Johnson, Kevin Anderson, Mark Alley. $45,740.

One purpose of the proposal is to conduct an exchange tour for organic groups in Arkansas and North Carolina to share information on organic dairy farming from each state so that they determine the problems and possible solutions to enhance the efficiency of organic dairy farming in the southern region. The second objective is to conduct training conferences for professional trainers in Arkansas and North Carolina. The workshops will be formatted to provide interactive problem solving exercises and hands-on learning with an organic dairy farm. General practices and concepts will include: an overview of the National Organic Program, preventive management for optimum livestock health, pasture management, soil fertility, weed control, and cropping rotations which maximize production, nutrient management, and pest management. Emphasis will be placed on factors for successfully transitioning to organic dairy production but will also be applicable to transitioning other livestock farms. A follow-up survey will assess management put into practice.

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Push-pull fly management for deep bedded swine barns. 2007. Southern IPM, CSREES. Wes Watson, Morgan Morrow, Michael Roe. $97,000.

The project will look at the feasibility of using plant derived insect repellents and the entomopathogen, Beauveria bassiana, to manage house flies in swine barns. We will also be looking at the non-target effects on parasitoids.The overall goal of this research project is to document and demonstrate integrated pest management approaches to minimize the severity of filth fly infestation in a dry-bedding waste management system.

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Wayne County local food initiative. 2007. Tonya Moore, Nancy Creamer, Danielle Baptiste. Resources and consulting to facilitate community-based food systems. Southern Region Sustainable Agriculture Working Group.

In support of developing local food systems across North Carolina and formalizing the community partnerships already existing in Goldsboro, the site of the CEFS research farm, CEFS acquired this seed grant to explore the development of a community based collaboration. At the initial November 2007 meeting, CEFS brought over thirty NGOs, businesses, government entities, and individuals to the table to talk about the local food system in Goldsboro and Wayne County, and how they might organize to address its needs and build on its strengths. In February of 2008, committed parties met again and formed the Wayne Food Initiative, dedicated to creating a healthy, knowledgeable, and engaged community that through collaborative efforts and active leadership makes

  1. nutritious and affordable food accessible to all,
  2. protects the natural world through sound environmental practices, and
  3. supports a strong and growing local farming and business economy.

All WFI efforts engage and support children and youth, facilitating a future food system leadership who themselves will work toward good food for the entire community. As well as providing dedicated coordination staff hours, CEFS has continued its technical support of particular partner organization (such as the Wayne County Public Library community garden and the Dillard Academy school farm) and has been an active partner in newly developing WFI projects (the Wayne County Health Department’s Mini Mobile Farmers’ Market, the Emerging Leaders Program for youth ages 14-29, and growing projects sited in the city of Goldsboro).

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Examining pasture-based dairy systems to optimize profitability, environmental impact, animal health and milk quality. 2003-2006. USDA Southern Region SARE Program. S.P. Washburn, G.A. Benson, J.A. Bertrand, J.H. Fike, J.T. Green, Jr., G.E. Groover, T.C. Jenkins, and K. E. Saker. $226,903.

A three-year dairy grazing experiment at 3.2 vs. 2.2 cows/ha was conducted by NC State University with related projects on immunocompetence measures (Virginia Tech); a cooperating farm study of fatty acids in milk related to pasture intake (Clemson); and rolled barley/molasses or citrus pulp/molasses partially replacing corn supplement (Clemson). Higher stocking rate with more supplement yielded more milk, similar health and reproduction, lower measures of immunocompetence, but more stored forage fed off pasture. Higher pasture intakes associated with higher CLA in milk. Supplement source did not affect milk yield although protein percentages were lower on the citrus pulp diet.

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Transitioning to an organic pasture-based dairy-beef production system. 2005-2006. N.C. Extension IPM Program. S.P. Washburn, E.A. Coite, M.H. Poore, J.T. Green, Jr., D.J. Hanson, M.A. Drake. $13,528.

One of the question marks on potential transition to organic livestock production in North Carolina and elsewhere in the Southeast is the ability to rear young stock as beef or replacement heifers without the need for use of anthelmintics. This study was conducted to provide insights into pasture management and other management strategies to enable livestock producers to learn integrated approaches to managing internal parasites for productive and profitable beef and dairy-beef enterprises.

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Can sorghum sudangrass grown as a summer cover crop for organic no-till vegetable production double as a cash crop for the organic hay market? 2004. Organic Farming Research Foundation. Denise McKinney, Nancy Creamer, Michael Wagger. $6,155.

This research strives to develop and assess an organic, no-till fall cabbage production program that incorporates rotation with the summer cover crop sorghum-sudangrass Sorghum bicolor (L.) Moench X S. sudanense (Piper) Staph. Further, the project will test the efficacy of a mid-season cover crop harvest to sell as organic hay. The results of this study will assist growers in determining best management practices for a summer cover crop that maximize benefits such as weed suppression, organic matter production, and soil nutrient contribution.

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Development of effective on-farm beneficial insect habitat for improved insect pest management. 2004. NCDA PETF. David Orr, Mike Linker. $84,645.

We propose to provide North Carolina farmers with the know-how to grow locally adapted beneficial insect habitat to reduce reliance on insecticides for crop protection. This is something of interest to a wide array of growers. For example, in 2000, N.G. Creamer and T. Kleese conducted a survey of North and South Carolina organic growers asking what their top ten research needs were. The number one response was "insect pests". The same growers were asked to prioritize research needs for resolving insect pest problems - beneficial insects and beneficial insect habitat were their first and second choices. Organic tobacco growers also have problematic insect pests. There are no suitable insecticides for aphids and growers are incurring losses every year. We are addressing grower concerns by conducting farm-scale research with commercial beneficial insect habitats. These commercial mixes are not particularly suited to being grown in the southeast, and as habitat, did not provide an increase in beneficial insect activity to help insect pest management on farms. This proposal aims to combine our academic knowledge, and growers practical knowledge, to select and test hardy plants that are adapted to the southeast and can be grown together on farms in non-crop areas to provide beneficial insect habitat. The end product of this work will be recommendations on how to design and grow plant combinations adapted to North Carolina that will serve to increase beneficial insect populations within a farm. We will use extension publications, presentations, field days, and demonstrations to show farmers how to produce these habitats on their farms.

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Evaluation of beneficial insect habitat for organic farms. 2004. SARE Research and Education Grant: LS04-161. PI David Orr.

This proposal aims to study the value of beneficial insect habitats that are increasingly being employed by growers on organic farms in the South. There are few data to support farmers in their attempts to increase natural control of pest insects, resulting in a scarcity of guidelines. Some growers are developing their own beneficial insect habitat based on anecdotal information, while others are turning to purchased habitat seed mixtures. While these commercial mixtures appear to offer some of the life sustaining resources needed by beneficial insects there are no data demonstrating seed quality, growth, beneficial insect attraction, or value to nearby crops in the southern United States. The objectives of this proposed project are to 1) examine the purity, germination and on-farm growth characteristics of these commercial seed blends; 2) determine what insects (beneficial or otherwise) are attracted to select cut flower crops, cover crops, and commercial beneficial seed blends, and 3) to construct and evaluate a simple beneficial insect habitat based on existing literature.

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N2-fixation and weed competition: Breaking the connection between crops and weeds. 2004. SARE Research and Education Grant: LS04-158. PIs Michael Burton, Nancy Creamer, Tom Rufty. $248,000.

Weed control remains one of the most challenging problems for profitable organic and sustainable agricultural systems. In this project, we propose a new strategy for weed management in the highly weathered, low fertility soils of the southeastern U.S. Crop rotations currently favored for the region place great importance on N2-fixing crops. In preliminary research with soybean and peanut, it has been established that much of the nitrogen driving weed growth (35 to 80%) actually comes from the N2-fixing crop plants themselves. The nitrogen is transferred to the weeds through hyphae of mycorrhizal fungi that connect plant root systems underground. Also, research results indicate that different amounts of N are transferred from different soybean varieties, which implies that varietal selection could become an important part of weed management strategies. This project will have two major objectives. One is to critically examine the impact of N transfer on weed vigor and competitiveness using high and low transfer soybean varieties and a group of methodologies that includes competition studies and quantification of N transfer by 15N natural abundance. The other objective is to evaluate weed control in a rotation that includes a low N-transfer soybean and a sweetpotato variety that has a low N requirement, and compare its effectiveness in reducing weed competition to that of traditional rotations.

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Partnership with the public: An alternative food systems model for swine in North Carolina. 2004. W.K. Kellogg Foundation. PIs Nancy Creamer, Michael Schulman, Sarah Ash. $600,000.

The objective of the Kellogg project is to implement a regionally transferable Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) marketing model that grows targeted consumer demand for regionally produced organic, sustainable, and antibiotic-free meat products while strengthening the capacity of independent producers to meet the demand. The model includes environmentally and socially responsible production standards, infrastructure support, consumer education, technical support, and market development. There are approximately 25 additional cooperators representing many departments at NCSU and NC A&TSU, and NGOs including: Carolina Farm Stewardship Association, Rural Advancement Foundation International-USA, American Livestock Breeds Conservancy, Sierra Club, Environmental Defense, Neuse River Foundation, Coastal Federation, Southern Environmental Law Center, Sustainable NC, and Red Gate Farms.

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A national model for agroecology instruction. 2003. USDA Higher Education Challenge Grant. PIs H. Michael Linker, J. Paul Mueller, Nancy Creamer. $100,000.

This project will develop an integrated agroecology program that links experiential training in sustainable agriculture at the CEFS facility with an academic program offering both majors and minors. This model is not currently an option in agricultural programs at LGU's. Making this linkage at NCSU will significantly enhance the educational opportunities in agroecology for undergraduate students, allowing them an extended and intensive exposure to agricultural systems, their environmental effects, and the forces that shape production systems. In addition, more and more students are entering the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences with no prior first-hand experience in farming. The capacity to provide such experience at CEFS is an integral part of the proposed academic agroecology program. The appeal of this program is easily extended to students interested in careers in land-use planning, environmental law, government policy, and non-governmental organizations. This is a desirable development in an era when fewer students are attracted to agricultural programs. Although agriculture employs about 23 million people, most students in the nation's colleges are to attract more students into agriculture, they need to be offered a curriculum that appeals to their interest in biology and ecology. We expect these students to be attracted to agroecology.

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Evaluation of beneficial insect habitat for organic farms. 2003. Southern Region SARE Graduate Student Award. Lisa Forehand, David Orr, Mike Linker. $10,000.

The purpose of this study is to evaluate the use of beneficial insect habitats on small farms in the South. While it appears that some of the commercial blends offer some of the life sustaining resources needed by beneficial insects, there is no data demonstrating growth, beneficial insect attraction or value to nearby crops in the southeastern United States. The objectives of this proposed study are to; 1) determine what insects (beneficial or otherwise) are attracted to select cut flowers, cover crops and commercial beneficial insect habitat blends; 2) examine the purity, germination and on-farm growth characteristics of selected commercial seed blends; and 3) to construct and evaluate a simple beneficial insect habitat based on existing literature.

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Natural areas of vegetation and their influence on weed populations in neighboring fields. 2003. Southern Region SARE Graduate Student Award. Susan Jelinek, J. Paul Mueller, Nancy Creamer, Michael Burton, Cavell Brownie. $10,000.

Natural areas of vegetation on farms provide increased biodiversity, structural diversity, habitat for wildlife and beneficial insects, and can act as buffers for agrochemicals. Nevertheless farmers have viewed these areas as potential sources of weeds, pests, and diseases. This study investigates weed populations in cropland bordering natural areas to determine if higher weed pressure exists along borders with natural vegetation. Weed abundance is being measured in com fields along transects that run from the natural area field edge to the center of the cropland and is being compared to data from transects along field borders with no natural vegetation.

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An efficient nutrient management tool for animal waste. 2002. Animal and Poultry Waste Management Center. Keith Baldwin, Noah Ranells.

This project examines three different composts and evaluates the availability of the organic N in the composts for crop growth. The experiment will also investigate the relationships of the C:N ratio of the compost and other compost physical characteristics to the mineralization of compost organic N. A second objective is to evaluate various ingredients and proportions of solid separated swine waste, poultry litter, and low quality baled forage for production of high quality compost. Finally, the effect of windrow turning frequency on compost production and quality will be assessed.

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Biological fitness and productivity in range-based systems comparing standard turkey varieties and industrial stocks. 2002. Southern Region SARE (lead, Don Bixby, American Livestock Breeds Conservancy). Paul Mueller, Jean-Marie Luginbuhl, Matt Poore. $1,700, NCSU share.

Bourbon red and an industrial strain of turkeys were purchased and shipped to 8 participating farms and CEFS in May 2002. Several farms have additional varieties that they are gathering data on. Data collection began immediately, and is still in progress. Farmers are recording data on feed consumption, weight gain, morbidity, mortality and live and dressed weight.

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Developing an alternative food systems model and implementation plan for swine in North Carolina. 2002. W.K. Kellogg Foundation. PIs Nancy Creamer, Michael Schulman, Sarah Ash, with approximately 25 additional cooperators representing many departments at NCSU and NCA&TSU, NGOs, government agencies, farmer groups and farmers. $100,000.

This project is designed to help small- and mid-sized family farmers compete with industrial-scale hog operations, protect the environment and support rural communities. The model will be comprehensive in scope and include production alternatives, infrastructure support, identity-preserved labeling, market development, consumer education, and policy support initiatives. The production model will be demonstrated at CEFS. Extension personnel, researchers, and students will be involved in all phases of the project. Partners, including non-government organizations, for-profit organizations, academic institutions, independent producers, and government agencies, will strive to ensure that the model developed is viable and will enable independent North Carolina farmers to profitably remain in the swine production business while implementing farming practices that ensure sustainability and add economic and social value to rural communities.

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Herbivore host choice and impact on seven Physalis species. 2002. NSF Pre-doctoral Fellowship. Melanie Bateman, Nicole Benda, Fred Gould.

The genus Physalis includes both crop and weed species. Heliothis subflexa is a moth that only feeds on Physalis. It causes damage to Physalis crops (Le. cultivars of tomatillo) and appears to decrease the productivity of the weed species (e.g. Physalis angulata). Seven tomatillo species were planted at CEFS so that data could be collected on this herbivore's preference for the different species and the amount of damage that it does to each species.

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Use of a constructed wetlands to remove nitrogen and phosphorus from pumped shallow groundwater. 1998-2002. Clean Water Management Trust Fund. PIs R.O. Evans, D. Osmond.

This five-year study, initiated in 1998, is utilizing a constructed wetlands to assimilate shallow groundwater nitrogen and phosphorus originating from an old unlined lagoon. A series of five pumping wells installed on the downstream seepage plume remove and route contaminated groundwater to a 0.35 ha constructed wetland for treatment. Inflow and outflow of the wetland are continuously monitored to determine nutrient loading and reduction rates. To date, about 70 percent of the nitrogen and 25 percent of the phosphorus pumped into the wetland have been assimilated within the wetland.

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Assessment of flood impacts on agricultural soils. 2001. N.C. Agriculture Foundation. Paul Mueller, Mary Barbercheck, Melissa Bell, Cavell Brownie, Michael Casteel, Nancy Creamer, Shuijin Hu, H. Mike Linker, Frank Louws, Michael Wagger. $147,000.

In 1999, flood waters from Hurricane Floyd inundated the cropping systems research area. Because we had soil samples archived from geo-referenced sampling points, we were able to return to the same points and resample to look for effects due to the flooding. In addition to routine NCDA samples analysis, soils were evaluated for heavy metals, pesticide contamination, eneric bacteria, soil microbial communities, and microarthropods

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Breeding a better cover crop: A screen of rye germplasm for weed suppression and nitrogen scavenging. 2001. Southern Region SARE Graduate Student Award. Chris Reberg-Horton, Nancy Creamer, Noah Ranells. $10,000.

This project supported a graduate student's efforts in building an interdisciplinary, rye cover-crop breeding team. This research was conducted at the Organic Unit at CEFS. Cereal rye is a popular cover crop due to its ability to suppress weeds and scavenge residual nitrogen from the soil. Past breeding efforts for rye have attempted to increase its yield as a cereal or forage. Unfortunately, these breeding programs may have decreased the ability of rye to suppress weeds and scavenge nitrogen. Methodologies are being developed to quantify cover crop parameters that have an impact on cropping system productivity and the environment. These parameters are not as easily measured as traditional breeding goals. Methods for quantifying allelopathic suppression of weeds and nitrogen scavenging are being developed as the first step towards a breeding program for rye.

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Integrated management of pasture flies for beef and dairy cattle in North Carolina. 2001. USDA, CSREES, Integrated Pest Management Grants Program, Southern Region. Wes Watson, Mike Stringham, Matt Poore, Jim Green, Steve Washburn. $95,014.

Cattle production in North Carolina is based on a rotational pasture system similar to others in the southern region. Under pasture conditions, two flies, horn fly, Haematobia irritans, and the face fly, Musca autumnalis, are seasonal pests of beef and dairy cattle. The goals of this project are to evaluate alternatives to traditional insecticide based horn fly and face fly management, including an evaluation of recent innovations in trapping technology and biological control.

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Revitalizing farms and communities through high value organic production: Demonstration, education, and marketing. 2001. Golden LEAF Foundation, Inc. Nancy Creamer, Noah Ranells, Theresa Nartea.  $127,000 (2001);  $77,000 (2002).

This project focuses on: 1) Assisting NC farmers in the development of direct marketing opportunities, via community based pilot programs that demonstrate models of: Community Supported Agriculture, corporate "direct farm to consumer" Web-based marketing, institutional food buying, and farmers markets; 2) Providing educational workshops for N.C. farmers, University extension personnel, and interested citizens on organic and sustainable agriculture production topics; 3) Supporting current efforts of N.C. farmers transitioning from conventional to alternative agricultural enterprises.

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Long-term, large-scale systems research directed at agricultural sustainability. 2001. USDA SARE. Paul Mueller, Nancy Creamer, Mike Linker, Frank Louws, Mary Barbercheck, Cavell Brownie, Michael Wagger, Michele Marra, Shuijin Hu, Charles Raczkowski, Joan Ristaino. $230,000.

This project is the second, three-year grant for the major farming systems experiment at CEFS. Initiated in 1998, the farming systems project encompasses 200 acres, and compares five diverse systems: a BMP short-rotation cash-grain system, an organic production system, an integrated crop/ animal system with a 15 year rotation, a forestry/woodlot system, and a successional ecosystem. The experiment is slated to continue in perpetuity. A wide range of parameters is being measured. These include: above-ground biomass of cover and cash crops, nutrient/energy flows, decomposition, soil quality indices (physical, chemical, biological), soil microbiology, microarthropods, entomopathogens, insects, weeds, disease, crop yield and quality; and, economics.

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Diversity and activities of soil microflora and mesofauna: Influence on soilborne pathogenic fungi. 2000. USDA NRI. Shuiji Hu. $214,000.

This project is nested within the SARE funded farming systems project (Long-term, Large-Scale...) described above. This project examines the diversity and activities of soil microorganisms and mesofauna, and their contributions to stability in the five agroecosystems along the disturbance and resource gradient. Stability of soil biosystems are being characterized by assessing dynamics and activities of naturally-occurring and introduced marked strains of two plant pathogenic fungi

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Evaluation of cover crops and conservation tillage for conventional and organic sweetpotato production in North Carolina. 2000. Southern Region SARE Graduate Student Award. Danielle Treadwell, Nancy Creamer. $9,927.

This project is taking place within the Organic Unit transition fields at CEFS. This work is comparing organic and conventional sweet potato production, with and without cover crops and tillage. Insects, nutrients, weeds, and economics are the main focus of this PhD work.

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Impact of agricultural systems on soil quality and sustainability. 2000. Southern Region SARE. PIs Mary Barbercheck, Frank Louws, Steve Koenning, Michael Wagger, Charles Raczkowski. $191,000.

Soil quality is linked to many physical, chemical and biological characteristics in the soil. In the systems experiment at CEFS, we are examining how each system affects the physical, chemical and biological (pest and beneficial organisms) characteristics in soil, and how these characteristics are linked to crop productivity and economic performance of the system. We are interested in identifying soil factors that are related to preventing pest outbreaks or raising the tolerance of crops to the presence of soil-dwelling pests. From this research we will also develop key indicators associated with crop productivity and soil "health." These indicators could then be used to help farmers in the Southeastern U.S. A. evaluate if their production practices are conducive to building and maintaining "healthy" and productive soil, or are degradative.

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Interactions between predators and insect-parasitic nematodes in soil. 2000. USDA SARE Graduate Student Award. Marie Newman, Mary Barbercheck. $10,000.

Entomopathogenic nematodes in the genera Steinernema and Heterorhabditis are commercially available as biological control agents for soil-dwelling insect pests. These beneficial nematodes also occur naturally in soil. Little is known about field biotic interactions that affect the efficacy of these nematodes. In the tillage unit at CEFS, we are studying the effects of tillage practices on the fate of entomopathogenic nematodes as commercially applied, and on nematodeinfected insect cadavers (simulation of a natural infection). We are accomplishing this by observing the response of soil fauna to these two types of application of nematodes. A better understanding of the biological interactions that occur between these beneficial nematodes and soil fauna, and how these interactions are influenced by tillage practices, will help us to use them in pest management systems more effectively, thus reducing the need for synthetic insecticides to manage soil-dwelling insect pests.

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Training in alternative research strategies for sustainable farming systems. 2000. USDA SARE PDP. Keith Baldwin, Scott Marlow, Noah Ranells, Frank Louws, Nancy Creamer. $101,700.

This project involves several of the CEFS faculty and the Rural Advancement Foundation International. A graduate course in participatory on-farm research is being delivered as part of this project. Extension agents are attending several class sessions, have formed partnerships with growers, selected projects initiated by these growers and are conducting on-farm experiments this season. Agents are learning appropriate experimental design and analysis and the benefits of the participatory on-farm research model.

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Revitalizing small and mid-sized farms: Organic research, education, and extension. 2000. USDA IFAFS (with Ohio State University, Iowa State University, Tufts University, Organic Farming Research Foundation). Frank Louws, Nancy Creamer, Mike Linker, Mary Barbercheck, Shuijin Hu, Ada Wossink, Steve Koenning, Micheal Wagger, Cavell Brownie. $499,117, NCSU share ($1.8 million total).

While this project also has extension, education and marketing initiatives, the research portion of this project is at CEFS. The IFAFS will continue the work in the NRI-funded organic transition and will enable the research team to collect data from all plots until they are certified organic.

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Developing an intensive summer internship program in sustainable agricultural systems. 1999. Z. Smith Reynolds Foundation amd USDA Higher Education Challenge Grant. Nancy Creamer, Keith Baldwin, Mike Linker, Paul Mueller. $96,605.

These grants facilitated the development of an 8-week, 6credit summer internship opportunity for undergraduate students at CEFS. Students live at the facility and choose either a research track or a production/extension track. In the research track, students receive training and participate in an ongoing CEFS project or a project designed specifically for them. In the. production/ extension track, students study sustainable production principles and practices, and focus on the design and implementation of appropriate demonstrations to facilitate extension training in those practices. Students gain hands-on production and marketing experience on the organic student farm at CEFS. Students also participate in seminars, field trips, readings, and discussions.

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Strategies for transition to organic farming systems. 1999. USDA-NRI Agriculture Systems. PIs Nancy Creamer, Paul Mueller, Michael Wagger, Michele Marra, David Monks, Mary Barbercheck, Frank Louws, Cavell Brownie, Ada Wossink, Steve Koenning. $380,000.

This experiment takes place within the context of the larger SARE-funded cropping systems study (described above), as we transition within that study to a certified organic treatment. The overall goal of this research is to investigate various strategies, from a biological and economic systems perspective, for making the transition from conventional to organic production systems. Five strategies of transition are being evaluated in addition to the conventional control. The transition is being studied in the following 3-year crop rotation: soybeans, sweet potatoes, wheat/cabbage. The experiment is being initiated in two sequential years (1999, 2000) to allow for replication in time. A wide range of parameters is being measured. These include: aboveground biomass of cover crop and cash crop, nutrient/energy flows, soil quality indices (physical, chemical, biological), decomposition, soil microbiological properties, insects, weeds, disease, crop yield and quality; soil microarthropods, soil entomopathogens, and economics.

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A model for long-term, large-scale systems research directed toward agricultural sustainability. 1998. USDA SARE. PIs: Paul Mueller, Nancy Creamer, Mike Linker, Frank Louws, Michael Wagger, George Wilson, Cavell Brownie. Cooperators: Mary Barbercheck, Carlyle Franklin, Charles Rzkowski, Larry King, Michele Marra, Ada Wossink, Matt Poore, Steve Washburn. $256,604.

This was the original funding for the CEFS farming systems research ("Long-term, large-scale...") as described on the 2001 grant-funded projects page.

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Building capacity in sustainable agriculture: A comprehensive training program in organic farming systems for cooperative extension agents, specialists, and other educators. 1997. USDA SARE PDP. PIs Nancy Creamer, Frank Louws, George Wilson, with 26 faculty from NCSU and NCA&TSU participating in the training. $97,500.

More than 50 agents participated in a series of workshops that were offered as in-service training and as a 4-credit graduate level North Carolina State University (NCSU) course. The Organic Unit at the Center for Environmental Farming Systems (CEFS), served as a home base for training activities. These training activities consisted of lectures, hands-on demonstrations, group discussions, field trips, and class exercises. Two unique features of the workshops were the interdisciplinary, team teaching approach and the emphasis on integration of information among production practices. For more information see: Creamer, N.G., K.R. Baldwin, and F.J. Louws. 2000. A training series for Cooperative Extension Agents on Organic Farming Systems. HortTechnology: 10-675-681.

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Effect of predators on entomopathogenic nematodes. USDA NRI. PI Mary Barbercheck. $78,569.

This work is described above in the USDA SARE graduate student award for Newman and Barbercheck.

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Grazing management training to enhance the sustainability of pasture based beef production systems. USDA SARE Professional Development Program. PIs Jim Green, Matt Poore. $31,759.

This training project focuses on helping livestock farmers and Farm Agency Workers (within and outside of NC) develop a sustainable approach to pasture-based livestock management. Several one to two day "in-depth" training programs were conducted which included "hands-on" field exercises to reinforce classroom discussions. Several hours of lecture and field exercises were developed with supporting visuals which can be used as resource material for follow-up educational programs. We expect this material to be used by many agency workers and by vocational education teachers in the Southern Region.

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Implementation, evaluation, and demonstration of riparian buffer and controlled drainage BMPs to reduce the impacts of animal production on water quality in the Neuse River Basin. EPA 319(h) funding through NCDWQ. PIs Robert Evans, Wendell Gilliam, Greg Jennings, Steve Washburn, Jim Green, Matt Poore. $194,763.

Methodology to establish, restore, and evaluate riparian vegetative buffers is being evaluated in field scale studies. In this project, PIs are quantifying relationships between hydrology, water chemistry, and water quality in restored riparian vegetative buffers and evaluating the potential for managing hydrology, water chemistry, and water quality functions.

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Interactions between native and introduced entomopathogenic nematodes. 1997. USDA NRI. PI Mary Barbercheck. $116,283.

Entomopathogenic nematodes occur naturally in soil and are also produced commercially as a biological control agent for soil-dwelling insect pests. Because these beneficial nematodes occur naturally in agricultural fields and provide natural control of insect pests, it is important to know if the application of commercial nematode strains will be detrimental to those that occur naturally. Depending on production system, it may be necessary to apply nematodes that can withstand particular crop production practices that are detrimental to naturally-occurring beneficial nematodes. A better understanding of the biological interactions that occur between these beneficial nematodes, and how these interactions are influenced by crop production practices, will help us to use them in pest management systems more effectively, thus reducing the need for synthetic insecticides to manage soil-dwelling insect pests.

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Woodlot forestry research and development program level spreaders on conservation tillage unit. 1997. US EPA, 319. PIs Carlyle Franklin, Dennis Hazel. $83,000.

Three sites were developed on the conservation tillage studies unit as part of the Nonpoint-source Program through the NC Division of Water Quality. The objective of the project was to demonstrate the use of level spreaders to enhance the effectiveness of Forested Filter Zones in cleaning agricultural runoff over a range of operational conditions. Data collection began in mid-1997.

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