WABI (Channel 5) spoke with Donna Coffin, extension educator with the University of Maine Cooperative Extension, about the Sustainable Agriculture Research and Education Program (SARE) that awards grants to farmers. Coffin said the program allows farmers to test out ideas that could improve their business to help them determine if the idea could be profitable.
With consumer interest in locally raised foods steadily growing, vegetable farmers are discovering they can add an important income stream through high tunnels — a cost-effective means to extend production and sales into the traditional off season.
In-depth information about high tunnels can be found in SARE’s new Season Extension Topic Room — a one-stop collection of dozens of guidebooks, curricula, webinars, bulletins and other how-to materials to help farmers, educators, and researchers across the country implement effective season extension strategies.
Recognizing the role that high tunnels can play in diversifying farmer income while meeting growing consumer demand for local food, NRCS offers grants that help pay for high tunnel construction.
The Season Extension Topic Room will be updated with new resources as they become available, so check back often!