LONDON, Ohio – Small-acreage and hobby farmers interested in transitioning to energy independence can find more information at Farm Science Review on how to use on-farm resources as renewable energy.
Maurus Brown, an Ohio State University Extension specialist who is involved in bioenergy initiatives at OSU South Centers at Piketon, will present "Can Small Farms Move Off the Energy Grid?" at 2 p.m. Sept. 22 at the Small Farm Center. Farm Science Review will take place Sept. 22-24 at the Molly Caren Agricultural Center in London, Ohio.
"The concept of bioenergy on the farm is not new, but many farmers don't even think about how much they are spending each month on energy consumption," said Brown. "The purpose of the session is to help farmers figure out their current expenses, if they would save money by switching over to renewable energy, and what resources would work best for their particular farm, whether it's wind or solar energy, wood byproducts, manure converted to energy, or other types of bioenergy crops."
In addition, Brown will provide information on how farmers can explore ways to improve on-farm energy use, such as improving farming practices, growing bioenergy crops, or using more fuel-efficient vehicles.
"The point is to get farmers thinking about ways of making their farm more energy efficient and sustainable, while potentially saving money at the same time," said Brown.
In addition to the Small Farms Center presentation, Ohio State University and Purdue University specialists will also be providing information on energy resources in the Energy Education Tent, located on Friday Avenue of the Review's exhibitor grounds.
Other topics being covered at the Small Farm Center during the Review include blueberry production, grants and loans for farm operations, farmers' markets, managing on-farm nutrients, starting a greenhouse business, aquaculture opportunities, starting a managed grazing operation, using high tunnels, plasticulture strawberries and starting and maintaining a small sheep flock.
For a complete agenda, log on to http://fsr.osu.edu.
Farm Science Review is sponsored by the College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences, Ohio State University Extension, and the Ohio Agricultural Research and Development Center. It attracts upwards of 140,000 visitors from all over the country and Canada, who come for three days to peruse 4,000 product lines from 600 commercial exhibitors, and learn the latest in agricultural research, conservation, family and nutrition, and gardening and landscape.
Tickets are $8 at the gate or $5 in advance when purchased from county offices of OSU Extension or participating agribusinesses. Children 5 and younger are admitted free. Hours are 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sept. 22-23 and 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Sept. 24.
For more information, log on to http://fsr.osu.edu. Farm Science Review is also on Twitter (http://www.twitter.com/OhioStateFSR), Facebook (http://www.facebook.com/FarmScienceReview), and Ning (http://fsrosu.ning.com).