Midwest CSA Conference

Date: December 3-4, 2015
Location: The Plaza, Eau Claire, WI

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The Wisconsin School for Beginning Dairy and Livestock Farmers: Keeping the Dream of Farming Alive

As older farmers retire, fewer young farmers are stepping in to take their place. The number of beginning farmers dropped 20 percent in the last five-year census period, and the average US farmer now tops 58 years of age. more

CIAS Mini-Grants Support Graduate Student Research in Sustainable Agriculture

CIAS supports innovative graduate student research addressing the challenges faced by small- and medium-sized farms and food businesses. Awarded annually, our competitive mini-grants aid students as they initiate their research in sustainable agriculture and food systems. more


Northern Nut Growers Conference Features Wisconsin Hazelnut Production

The Northern Nut Growers Association (NNGA), in partnership with CIAS and UW-Extension, held the 106th NNGA conference in La Crosse, July 27-29. About 150 participants from across the country gathered for three days to talk about the business of nut production, processing and marketing in the context of agroforestry and perennialization. more

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Growing Wisconsin’s Grazing Future: Results of the Blue Sky Greener Pastures Consultation Process

Posted July 2012

grazing cows

For a wide variety of economic, environmental and social reasons, it makes good sense to regard the practice of managed grazing as an effective system for strengthening dairy and livestock farming in Wisconsin. The UW-Madison Center for Integrated Agricultural Systems (CIAS) partnered with GrassWorks, Inc. to develop a statewide, participatory discussion about managed grazing that they called “Blue Sky Greener Pastures” (BSGP). Funded by the UW-Madison Wisconsin Institute for Sustainable Agriculture, the objective of the project was to generate new initiatives and imaginative ideas (Blue Sky) to extend managed grazing and its benefits (Greener Pastures) to more producers, businesses, educators, consumers and communities.

This report synthesizes the discussions from the BSGP regional listening sessions. The analysis is organized around six recurring themes: education for established graziers, education for beginning and transitioning farmers, networking, research, marketing and policy.

Download Growing Wisconsin’s Grazing Future (PDF)