Northeast Pasture Consortium 2019 Research and Education Priorities
1. Explore new methods to transfer knowledge and information to increase adoption of research findings within the agriculture community; incorporate social science research into increased adoption and technology transfer.
- Including Farm Bureau to additionally influence regulations and legislations
- USDA-ARS—keep working with and building partnerships
- Seek new contact with USDA-NRCS Chief, commitment to encourage reps from every state (electronic options for joining?)
- Strengthen Extension research connections, work listservs and across communication methods
- University research connections, work listservs and across communication methods—use OREI funding opportunity
- Invite farmers from all NEPC states (Cedar Tree grant—NE states, could apply to USDA OTT, USDA-NIFA Scott Angle)
2. Ecosystem services and disservices from pasture systems and grazing management.
- Impacts to riparian areas
- Impacts to water quality (citizen involvement)
- Wildlife benefits to adaptive grazing management
- Impacts of permanent stream and streambank exclusion from livestock grazing riparian area pastures
- Economic models for ecosystem service payments (measurement, payment, structure)
- Silvopasture contributions to carbon sequestration; adaptive strategy in changing climate conditions
3. Research adjustments in forage management needs in a changing climate.
- Regional management approaches (understanding variability)
- Species adaptation and evaluation (meadow fescue, use of annuals, increase in invasive plants)
4. Soil biology and management impacts on animal health and human health.
- Small ruminant parasite research at WVU, Rhode Island, Cornell
- Red and white clover functions in animal and soil health, pollinators, forage and animal production
- Grazing management as it affects soil health (compaction, worms)
5. Further research in meat and dairy products regarding human nutrition and health.
- Fatty acid updates, importance of side chains on long chain FAs, and short chain FAs
- Artificial gut for milk digestibility
- Whole milk/fats
- C3, C4 grasses, forbs, and effects on O-3 in milk and meat
6. Addressing the heavy use area/pasture interface (vegetation management).
- Comparison of options (deep-bed packs, composted packs, wood chips)
- Biological composition of bedded packs and livestock health (mastitis—John Barlow & Deb Neher)
- Bale grazing & in-field winter management/calving
- Species evaluation for vegetated heavy use areas
7. Farm profitability and upcoming cultural/societal changes.
- Compare different philosophies, results, benchmarks
- Development of artificial meat (and other animal products) and how will that affect our work, audience, research
- Ecological/carbon footprint of animal production compared to ecological footprints of alternative products
- Quality assurance program requirements; impacts on profitability