Our Work With FarmersSouthern Mutual Help Association works with family farmers, helping them to meet the challenges facing agriculture today and assisting in their transition to sustainable agriculture through the following actions:
provides technical assistance, educational
for sugarcane farmers and encourages the involvement of the entire
family. Through this initiative, farmers and their families become
teachers -- creating models, demonstrating the value of sustainable
agriculture practices, and sharing their expertise not only with other
farmers but with universities and other groups and institutions across
the country. They have conducted workshops on such sustainable
agriculture practices as cover cropping, composting, diversifying
crops, rebuilding soil organics, reducing overall use of synthetic
fertilizers and pesticides, and transitioning from conventional
harvest burning to green harvest of sugarcane.
- SMHA serves as a business and organizing
consultant for sugarcane farmers and sugar mills, helping them develop
value-added products from
sugarcane's fibrous waste and from raw sugar itself so sugarcane
farmers can survive and thrive in the face of increased competition
and adverse world trade agreements.
- SMHA helps farm families create and implement
strategies for retaining prime agricultural
land in farming and assists farm families in creating
models for farmers to gain ownership of their
land as opposed to relying on short-term leases.
- SMHA worked at the national and regional levels
to co-found the Southern Sustainable
Agriculture Working Group (Southern SAWG) -- a working
group of nonprofits and farm family representatives who provide
technical assistance in implementing sustainable agriculture practices
and providing leadership in sustainable agriculture policy at the
regional and national levels.
- Through its leadership in co-creating the
Sustainable Agriculture Working Group, SMHA is able to leverage its
work and have a greater voice in agricultural
policy making at the state, regional and national levels.
SMHA is in a position to recommend farm leaders trained in sustainable
agricultural practices for positions on agricultural policymaking
bodies at the state, regional and national levels.
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