Current Projects

Adoption of solar drying technologies for specialty crops

The overall goal of this project is to determine the technical requirements, economics and market for on-farm drying of specialty plants using solar dehydrators by small growers in the US and Tajikistan.

Organic Agriculture

We are interested to know what how market channels affect farmer's decision to adopt organic certification. For instance, we expect that farmers selling through local markets may not feel the need to certify organic due to economic incentives (price premiums) and social motives (grower-consumer connection). We are also interested to understand what are the main drivers of decertification. Specifically, why organic certified farmers may drop the certification program? We expect that economic and market barriers are important in this decision.

 

Farmers' Market Price Data

We will be working with the Center for Crop Diversification (CCD) http://www.uky.edu/ccd/ to create a regional database of farmers' market and produce auction prices. Farmers and farmer’s markets will have access to prices and product availability to begin making decisions based on real-time information. We will use this database to create reports that will have an impact on small- and medium-size farmers as well as beginning farmers. Farmers using our reports will be able to select market channels for their products, understand competition in farmer’s markets, determine the market window for specific crops, and assess how prices change over time in various markets.

 

Enterprise Budgets

We will be compiling and creating enterprise budgets that farmers can use for planning their operations, evaluate the potential of technologies and crops, develop solid business plan, and apply for financing or grants. To access enterprise budgets, go to Resources.

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