Creating a Movement
Ag Innovations was approached by the leaders of the Biodynamics Association and the Demeter Association in early 2017 about a project to bring together the biodynamic agriculture community around a shared agenda for the future. Motivated by the upcoming 100th anniversary of Rudolf Steiner's first agriculture lectures in 1924 and the growing demand for biodynamic products, the time was ripe to strengthen their network and get to work supporting farmers, ranchers and the whole value chain dedicated to the biodynamic approach. The work on the project got underway in earnest in January of 2018 and represents the culmination of over a decade's worth of experience at At Innovations helping groups find, articulate, and act on their plans for a better future.
The project has three main steps:
- A robust search for the animating ideas, aspirations, and actions that are shared across the biodynamic community. To collect this information we are holding 8 virtual focus groups and surveying over 5,000 individuals.
- Synthesis and refinement of a vivid picture that captures the passions and common ground identified and put it into a call to action for the community. To accomplish we will synthesize thousands of pieces of data into themes that will then be refined by members of the biodynamic community at a fall 2018 retreat.
- Ground truthing the results at the Biodynamic Association annunal meeting. We will be preparing a synthesis of everything that was learned and it will be offered to the biodynamic community as a jumping off point for future collaboration and action.
What makes this project unique is both the scale of the community engagement and the unique role biodynamic agriculture plays as consumers become more and more careful about the food they eat. Representing some of the highest standards in the world for purity and biologically friendly farming practices, biodynamic farmers and ranchers are in the vanguard of regenerative agriculture--agriculture that actually restores health and vitality to land.
Watch for more on this important project throughout 2018.
- We're Hiring! Seeking a Talented Senior Facilitator to round out our team!
- We're Hiring: Senior Facilitator
- Current Ag Innovations Roundtables and Projects:
- Systems Thinking for Intractable Problems: From Problem-Solving to Emergence-Seeking
- From Forests to Farms: a Learning Journey with California Water Action Collaborative (CWAC)
- When Water Works with Fire: FireSmart Lake Sonoma
- Cultivating California’s Bioeconomy: Turning Ag Waste Into Profit
- Santa Barbara County Food Action Plan Released
- Roadmap for Climate Resilience Launched in Sonoma County
- Longstanding CRAE Member, Richard Rominger, Awarded UC Davis's Highest Award
- 200+ Leaders Convene for 2016 Sonoma County Food Forum
Recent Related Projects
San Diego Community Food Project
Ag Innovations served as an evaluation consultant for the Community Food Project of the International Rescue Committee in San Diego in 2011-2012, assisting in evaluation efforts and supporting integration of participant feedback.
California Agricultural Commissioners and Sealers Association, Strategic Planning
Ag Innovations worked with the Board of the California Agricultural Commissioners and Sealers Association over the course of a few years to develop a series of strategic plans for the group to take their work to the next level, culminating in the hiring of CACASA's first executive staff in 2011.
California Roundtable on Agriculture and the Environment
The California Roundtable on Agriculture and the Environment (CRAE) is California’s preeminent forum for agricultural and environmental leaders to resolve conflict, find common ground, and work together to support agriculture and improve environmental outcomes.
“It's not often that you find an organization with the capacity to move groups from discord to consensus: Ag Innovations helps diverse stakeholders do just that.”