- Remarkable Success of MSU Extensionís Master Gardener Program Underscores Power of Empowerment
MSU Extension initiated the program in Michigan in 1978 and, according to the Master Gardener website, there are now over 23,000 certified volunteers in 72 counties.
- Michigan Milk Producers conserve water with new innovations, practices
At the MMPA Ovid Plant, raw milk is condensed through an evaporation process that yields an average of 130 million net gallons of water annually, which adds up to more than 400 million gallons in the last three years.
- Agricultural Leaders of Michigan launch new Ag Report
"We're excited to launch our brand new Ag Report to discuss issues that have a dramatic impact on agriculture and to discuss ideas for continuing to grow this vital sector of Michigan's economy."
- Agricultural Leaders of Michigan: Promoting Michigan agriculture's power and potential
"The things that we focus on tend to be pretty big picture," she says. "Trade is a big issue for them." Statewide infrastructure is a main focus of ALM, Byrum says, including broad topics such as roads, bridges, railroads, ports and waterways.
- Detroit, MSU partnering on global food system innovation
"I'm pleased that MSU has chosen Detroit as a partner from an innovation standpoint," says Bing. "MSU is trying to help us utilize the resources we have to feed Detroiters and Michiganders, and to export food around the globe."
MSU and Detroit plant seed for urban food system innovation
- Rick Foster talks with Kirk Heinze
Michigan State University recently announced a partnership with the city of Detroit to address world sustainability issues in Michigan’s backyard. Kirk Heinze interviews Dr. Richard Foster, Kellogg Chair in Food, Society and Sustainability at MSU and Co-director of the MetroFoodPlus Innovation Cluster @ Detroit on Greening of the Great Lakes.
“This is about communities who see their future,” says Foster. The purpose of the MetroFoodPlus Innovation Cluster @ Detroit is to start thinking about innovations in sustainability, food production and energy use because for future generations, he says. “The global framing (of the initiative),” Foster says, “looks at what this country and what this world will look like in 30 to 40 years out.”
Today, he says, 80 percent of people in the United States lives in urbanized metropolitan areas. “By the year 2050, there will be 9.3 billion people on the planet and 70 percent of them will live in cities,” says Foster, “and that means we have to dramatically think differently about how we feed people in the future.” In developing countries, there is a notable mass migration to urban centers because people are in desperate need of more reliable healthcare, education and economic opportunities, he says.
Cities are safety net, but in order to be successful, he says, it is predicted that food production will need to double while using the same amounts of water and energy resources as are used today. One step in that direction, says Foster, would be to eliminate perishable food items shipped worldwide and eat what is grown nearby.
Detroit, a postindustrial city, has its weaknesses including abandoned properties and liability issues, but Foster is hopeful. “Detroit is a very unique city,” he says. “We could actually be a global thought leader for cities around the world.”
MetroFoodPlus Innovation Cluster @ Detroit hopes to revitalize how food, water and energy come together in Detroit, Foster says. The initiative hopes to bring innovators to the city to start new businesses and expand industries while increasing green spaces within and around the city.
“We have a covenant with the people of Michigan. If we don’t help each other,” Foster says, “we’re going to be down the same road we’ve always been down.”