The 1890 Agroforestry Consortium is a team of 1890 Land-Grant University and USDA government agency partners. Its mission is to develop and advance agroforestry research, teaching, and extension among the 1890 land-grant universities and Tuskegee University. The consortium consists of multi-disciplinary teams of faculty and staff, working in partnership with government agencies and other entities. This initiative will significantly expand the 1890 university’s agroforestry partnership opportunities with NIFA, Forest Service, and Natural Resources Conservation Service.
Many small farms and woodland owners are reluctant to produce tree-based products using traditional forestry practices because of the lag time between planting and income generation. Agroforestry is a land use practice that combines the production of agricultural crops with that of timber and other tree-based products. Agroforestry offers advantages over forestry in producing agricultural products throughout the life of the tree so that income flow is not interrupted. Agroforestry was identified by the USDA Advisory Committee on Small Farms in their report “Building on A Time to Act” as a means of increasing the sustainability of small farms. However, agroforestry is a new land use practice in the United States and requires further research, education, and outreach activities if adoption by landowners is to increase.
The agricultural and forestry professionals are ideally positioned to lead research, education, and extension activities because of their long-standing commitment and success in serving small farmers, small woodland owners, alternative farming practice operators, cooperatives owners/managers and collaborators.
The consortium’s strategic directions are:
- develop and/or enhance agroforestry capabilities at the 1890s;
- collaborate with other institutions;
- identify agroforestry research, education, and extension needs;
- advocate for agroforestry; and
- create and foster international linkages