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Determining Critical Mass of Agriculture in Oregon and Ohio

Project Period:

18 months 2001-07-01 - 2003-01-01

Principal Investigator:

Rich Hines and F.X. Rosica, AFT Pacific Northwest Regional Office; Bruce Weber, Oregon State University; Larry Libby, Ohio State University and Ann Sorensen, CAE

Description
This project seeks to develop ways for communities to determine how many farms must stay viable to maintain the necessary infrastructure for long term sustainability (i.e. what constitutes critical mass?). We held a planning meeting in DeKalb on July 28, 2001 for AFT Oregon, Pacific Northwest and Ohio staff, Ohio State and Oregon State University researchers, Ohio and Oregon Farm Bureau representatives, and land use planners. We focused on how we would 1) develop academic methodologies to determine critical mass and 2) translate those methodologies into something communities can use. We came up with a two-phase approach that will take at least two years to complete. The project proposal will be sent to USDA for consideration in their competitive grants program.

Outcomes
a methodology that communities can use to determine how many farms to protect

American Farmland Trust