Allison Organic Farm Field Day Aug. 11: Precision in Organic Ag Is Focus
July 18, 2012
MACOMB, IL – Precision in organic agriculture is the theme for the Western Illinois University Organic Research Program's annual Allison Farm Field Day next month. According to Joel Gruver, director of Western's Organic Research Program and assistant professor in the WIU School of Agriculture, the Field Day is slated from 9 a.m.-3 p.m. Saturday, Aug. 11 at the Dakin Farm shop and the Allison Organic Farm located near Roseville (IL).
"There are many opportunities for improved weed control, nutrient cycling and energy efficiency through greater precision on organic farms," Gruver explained. "Our keynote speaker, Jacob Bolson, ag engineer and precision ag specialist, will talk about emerging opportunities for the use of precision technologies in organic agriculture, with examples from his wife's family's farm in Hubbard, Iowa. Bolson's work was featured in a recent issue of Corn and Soybean Digest." (see http://bit.ly/M98Tz4)
Gruver noted that other speakers include Chad Sperry, director of the GIS (Geographic Information Systems) Center at WIU and Gary McDonald, an organic farming consultant and cultivation specialist.
Registration will begin at 9 a.m. in the Dakin Farm shop, followed by an overview of recent research on the Allison Farm and presentations on GPS (geographic positioning systems), and precision cultivation. The morning's events will conclude with a panel discussion featuring organic grain farmers who use GPS guidance and other precision ag technologies.
A free lunch will be provided featuring local farm products. Bolson's keynote presentation, "Emerging Opportunities for Precision in Organic Agriculture," will conclude the events in the Dakin Farm shop.
At approximately 2 p.m., the program will transition to the Allison Farm, where Gruver will host a walking tour of research and production fields (including examples of precision planting and cultivation). An equipment demonstration is also scheduled (weather permitting).
The event is open free to the public, but registration is required on or before Wednesday, Aug. 8, for those who plan to attend the lunch event. To register, contact Andy Clayton at (309) 298-1172 or (217) 322-2639 or the WIU School of Agriculture at (309) 298-1080.
Learn more about Western's Organic Research Program at www.wiu.edu/cbt/agriculture/farms/organic/.
Directions to the Dakin Farm shop (130 20th St., Roseville, IL)
If arriving from the north, travel on Rt. 67 five miles south of the Rt. 67 and Rt. 116 intersection in Roseville to County Rd. 20th Ave. N, then turn west and travel four miles on 20th Ave. to the southeast corner of the Allison Farm (intersection of 20th Ave. and 20th St.). Turn left and proceed south 0.7 miles on 20th St. to the Dakin Farm shop.
If arriving from the south, travel on Rt. 67 seven miles north of the Rt. 67 and Rt. 9 intersection in Good Hope to County Rd. 20th Ave. N (two miles north of the Warren County line), then turn west and travel four miles on 20th Ave. to the southeast corner of the Allison Farm (intersection of 20th Ave. and 20th St.). Turn left and proceed south 0.7 miles on 20th St. to the Dakin Farm shop.