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Integration of Agroforestry as a Transformative Solution to Climate Change Mitigation and Adaptation in Organic Farms

Generating Soil Health Solutions

Program Contact

Dr. LaKisha Odom

Year Awarded   2022

Total award amount   $200,000

Location   Knoxville, TN

Matching Funders   The Organic Center

Lack of Strategies for Organic Producers to Manage the Negative Effects of Climate Change on Their Farms

The 2022 Organic Center-FFAR joint Organic Research Program awards up to $200,000 per project focused on organic techniques for improving mitigation and resiliency to climate change, with a priority on systems-based approaches and a commitment to cross-sector partnerships. TOC and FFAR selected projects in regions typically underrepresented in organic research and with plans to expand their results to the greater organic farming industry by making their data open and accessible to the public.

Why this research is important

Organic farming is poised to be part of the climate change solution; organic farmers do not rely on fossil-fuel intensive synthetic inputs to manage pests or increase soil fertility and use farming techniques that sequester carbon in the soil. However, more work is needed to understand specific strategies organic growers can adopt to mitigate climate change, while managing the negative effects climate change is having on their farms through drought, flooding, invasive pests and extreme weather events.

Transitioning to organic farming can be confusing, costly and labor-intensive. This partnership with The Organic Center provides a much-needed opportunity for agriculture professionals to educate more farmers about organic farming best practices so we can sustainably meet consumers’ growing demand for organic products and support thriving farms. LaKisha Odom, Ph.D.
Scientific Program Director Soil Health

Details About this Research

Integration of Agroforestry as a Transformative Solution to Climate Change

Jagadamma is investigating how growing trees on organic farms and transforming organic waste from those farms into high-value compost naturally and cost-effectively mitigates climate change and reduces the carbon footprint of organic farms. She will conduct the study at Caney Fork Farms, a Tennessee certified organic farm, and develop and disseminate educational materials to improve producers’ knowledge of these and other innovative farm management approaches to increase their adoption throughout the Southeast.

Project Objectives

  1. To conduct a farm-scale carbon accounting of the diverse cropping in an operational organic farm
  2. To improve climate resilience and profitability of the tilled organic systems by applying a specialized organic amendment

How This Research Contributes to Our Mission

This bold research addresses complex agriculture issues and challenges that farmers face today.

Matching Funders

The Organic Center's mission is to convene credible, evidence-based science on the health and environmental impacts of organic food and farming and to communicate the findings to the public. The Center is an independent non-profit 501(c)(3) research and education organization operating under the administrative auspices of the Organic Trade Association.

Connect: @OrganicCenter

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