Source: UNIVERSITY OF VERMONT submitted to
IMPACTS OF MULTIFUNCTIONAL OPERATIONS ON LONG TERM SUSTAINABILITY AND PROSPERITY OF SMALL AND MEDIUM-SIZED FARMS AND RURAL COMMUNITIES
Sponsoring Institution
National Institute of Food and Agriculture
Project Status
TERMINATED
Funding Source
Reporting Frequency
Annual
Accession No.
0224470
Grant No.
2011-67023-30106
Project No.
VT-0065CG
Proposal No.
2010-04765
Multistate No.
(N/A)
Program Code
A1601
Project Start Date
Jul 1, 2011
Project End Date
Jun 30, 2015
Grant Year
2011
Project Director
Liang, C.
Recipient Organization
UNIVERSITY OF VERMONT
(N/A)
BURLINGTON,VT 05405
Performing Department
Community Development and Applied Economics
Non Technical Summary
The number of U.S. farms remained remarkably stable at around 2 million between 1978, when the current farm definition was adopted, and 2002. However, this relative stability in farm numbers masks a great deal of structural change. Remarkably, the 2007 Agricultural Census showed an increase in the number of farms in the U.S., albeit only at the very lowest and highest ends of the size distribution. The last Census also showed the continuing concentration of farm production on the largest farms. However, there is a stunning lack of systematic research on the linkages and interactions in the "new global economic order" between People (farmers, local residents in farming communities, and consumers), Place (farming communities, other communities directly or indirectly connect with farming communities), and Prosperity (farm income and profits, health of local farming communities, quality of life for farmers/farm families and consumers or local residents). The purpose of this project is to study small and medium-sized farms involved in multifunctional operations in the U.S., with an emphasis on the New England region. Multifunctional farm operations in this project are defined primarily to include agritourism and other activities such as specialty foods production, direct sales to local markets, and off-farm employment. These activities are hypothesized to enhance the long term sustainability and prosperity both of farmers and the rural communities in which they are located.
Animal Health Component
40%
Research Effort Categories
Basic
60%
Applied
40%
Developmental
(N/A)
Classification

Knowledge Area (KA)Subject of Investigation (SOI)Field of Science (FOS)Percent
60160993010100%
Goals / Objectives
The long term goal of this proposed study is to identify specific strategies and policy options that may increase the integration of local economies (communities) and farms, to enhance the overall viability of rural regions and to reduce poverty rates. The supporting objectives of the proposed study are: (1) to develop an inventory of small and medium - sized farms that are involved in multifunctional operations using original farm based surveys designed and collected cooperatively by the University of Vermont and the New England office of the National Agricultural Statistics Service, farm organization surveys, farm household data collected by USDA on the Agricultural and Resource Management Survey (ARMS), and national county -level data maintained by the Northeast Regional Center for Rural Development and the USDA's Economic Research Service. (2) to utilize scientific approaches (e.g., Multivariate Logistic and spatial clustering analysis) to examine whether multifunctional operations indeed enhance the sustainability and prosperity of small and medium - sized farms and rural communities and, if so, under which conditions (considering the challenges and opportunities farmers face in pursuing multifunctional operations); (3) to determine the levels of economic integration between farm household production of traditional and nontraditional farm products and services, and off-farm work of farm households in local communities using Multivariate Analysis of Variance (MANOVA); (4) to examine consumer preferences and levels of support for nontraditional farm products and services by surveying customers/visitors when they directly purchase products from farms (farm visits, farm stands, and farmers' markets), and when they participate in recreational activities on farms, and (5) to develop a set of recommended common practices and entrepreneurial strategies for decision making about multifunctional operations for farm operators and farm families.
Project Methods
This project will survey the population of farmers in Vermont at first to get a basic understanding of multifunctional operation, followed by an enterprise development survey with selected sample of farmers. The USDA ARMS data and national county based data will also be used to analyze the benefit/utility of multifunctional operation on farm income and community development.

Progress 07/01/11 to 06/30/15

Outputs
Target Audience:In more than 4 years, our project has reached more than 100,000 individuals, organizations, and institutions: Producers - farmers, farm managers, agricultural process and manufacturing leaders Distribution organization leaders Service Providers - farm management, planning, financial assistance, education, communication, resource, and networking Policy makers - local and federal government leaders, institutional leaders, agricultural association leaders, and all of their staff members Consumer groups Trade associations - sales, distribution, information, promotion, trade Changes/Problems: Nothing Reported What opportunities for training and professional development has the project provided?Our project has reached out to more than 100,000 producers, consumer groups, industry leaders, service providers, trade associations, researchers, educators, and many more individuals and organizations with direct or indirect linkages to agriculture industry. We presented project analysis and outcomes in more than 30 conferences, webinars, training workshops, and association meetings. A Youth oriented program was developed and designed to use our project findings to develop innovative curriculum to teach K-5 using the TRY model (Teens Reaching Youth). This program will be available in 2 years for all schools in the US. We developed a close relationship with the National MarketMaker program to integrate multifunctional agriculture concepts in e-commerce to support small and independent agricultural producers. The PI traveled to more than 40 states to present and share educational materials and training information with researchers, extension educators, local food leaders, and policy makers; supported more than 36 local coops and CSA organizations; and is in progress to support another 12 local food councils across the country. How have the results been disseminated to communities of interest?Training information and educational materials shared with communities of interest include: 1. linking multifunctional agriculture to farm viability 2. define multifunctional agriculture in the US and how it works 3. categorize multifunctional agriculture in agritourism, value added, direct sale, and off farm work - how they influence farm families and farming communities. 4. challenges and rewards of multifunctional agriculture 5. policy implications for multifunctional agriculture - what we need to do 6. strategic planning for operating a successful multifunctional farm 7. building a strong local network to support multifunctional agrcitulre community Here are a series of invited speech and training sessions: 1. Dream Weaver-Strategies to Create Successful Proposals by Integrating Research, Teaching, and Outreach through a Multidisciplinary Approach, Kansas State University at Salina, January 31-February 4, 2014. Understanding and Designing Long-Term Resilience in the US Food System: the Role of Entrepreneurship and Innovation in Supporting Regional Food Networks, Kansas State University at Manhattan, January 31-February 4, 2014. Using experiential learning in 4-H entrepreneurship programs - UVM Dollar Enterprise Program, 2014 Northeast Regional 4-H Volunteer Forum, University of Maryland, Nov 20-23. Jack and the Beanstalk - A Modern Day Secret to Success, 2014 Northeastern Regional Association of State Agricultural Experiment Station Directors Meeting, Baltimore, Maryland, May 11-12, 2014. Multifunctional Agriculture and Implications on Tourism Development, Vermont Travel Industry Conference, Manchester, Vermont, March 13-14, 2014. Multifunctional Agriculture and Rural Development, University of Hawaii, January 31 - February 5, 2014. Community Based Agriculture - Opportunities for Rural Development and Entrepreneurship, 2013 USDA invited presentation, Washington DC, Feb 20. Community-Based Multifunctional Farms in New England and Implications for Rural Development, 2012 ESS/SAES/ARD Meeting and Workshop, Portsmouth, New Hampshire, September. Multifunctional Farm Operation as Strategies to Improve Long Term Farm Profitability, USDA, Economic Research Services, May 2012. Multifunctional Farms in New England, Vermont Farms Association Annual Meeting, Pittsford, Vermont, February 2012. Help Students to Learn and Think Outside the Box with Entrepreneurship Education, Georgia Southern University, Center for Entrepreneurial Learning and Leadership, Statesboro, GA, November 2011. One Dollar Can Change the World, United for Sight and Global Health International Conference, Yale University, New Haven, Connecticut, April 2011. Multifunctional Farm Operation as Strategies to Improve Long Term Farm Profitability, The Northeast Regional Center for Rural Development and the Department of Agricultural Economics and Rural Sociology, Pennsylvania State University, State College, Pennsylvania, February 2011. What do you plan to do during the next reporting period to accomplish the goals? Nothing Reported

Impacts
What was accomplished under these goals? We have accomplished all the goals listed in the proposal: (1) we developed an inventory of all farms (more than 3,000) participating in multifunctional agriculture operations in New England region to understand why producers participated in multifunctional agriculture, how they perceived multifunctional operation as opportunities for improving farm income and quality of life, what challenges and issues producers faced while engaging in multifunctional agriculture, and what producers needed help with to enhance their knowledge and skills in multfunctional agriculture. (2) and (3) we developed and applied multivariave analysis to examine factors influencing multifunctional operations. Modeling procedures involved multivariate cluster analysis, GIS spatial analysis, and logistic regression analysis. Results showed that producers who were younger and more educated were more likely to participate in multifunctional operations. Direct sales seemed to be the most popular practice for producers to gain more market share. Over 90% of the farmers in New England had off-farm income, from other jobs, investment, retirement, and other businesses. Producers supported the notion of multifunctional operation because they wanted to build stronger connections with communities, people, and other organizations. (4) consumer preferred to buy local when they believed in supporting local farms. Prices did not seem to be the major determinant in purchasing local food. Consumers indeed believed that buying from local farmers could enhance the relationships between producers and other people in the communities. (5) policy papers had been submitted to the USDA offices and presented to USDA staff for considering the Farm Bill policy issues. The PI has successfully secured more funding from the USDA to expand the research, outreach, and education of the multifucntional agriculture. PI, Examining Impacts of Positive Youth Development through the Teen Teaching Youth (TRY) for Farm, Food, and Energy Program, USDA Hatch Grant, $45,000, October 1, 2015 to September 30, 2018. Summary: This project is designed to add components for food system and examine opportunities, challenges, and impacts of positive youth development relating to food system in a co-learning environment where teens teach the functions and interactions of life sciences and social sciences to grade 3-5 youth. The results of this proposed research project will establish a science-based systematic approach to (1) identify opportunities, challenges, and outcomes to launch an effective teen-teaching-youth model to promote positive youth development, and (2) assess influences and impacts of positive youth development introduced by the TRY model. Project Director and PI*, Understanding and Designing Long-Term Resilience in the US Food System: the Role of Entrepreneurship and Innovation in Supporting Regional Food Networks, USDA, National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA), Agriculture and Food Research Initiative (AFRI), Foundational Integrated Program - Entrepreneurship, $500,000, July 1, 2014 to June 30, 2017. (*Project director manages and oversees the project, while principal investigator enforces the execution of the project.) Summary: This project will introduce a novel approach to identify, characterize, link, and evaluate the entrepreneurial potential and innovativeness of Regional Food Networks by integrating social, economic, and ecological factors. The focus is to study integrated and entrepreneurial/innovative concepts of RFNs and their contributions to resilience at both the enterprise level and the community level, which directly relates to identifying new and creative economic and social opportunities for rural communities and food security. Co-PI, Sustaining and Enhancing Local Agriculture in Rural Areas: Assessing Key Producer and Consumer Issues in Northern New England, USDA, National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA), Agriculture and Food Research Initiative (AFRI), Foundational Integrated Program - Rural Development, $500,000, July 1, 2014 to June 30, 2017. Summary: This project is designed to assess the major issues and constraints faced by suppliers and marketers of produce grown in rural northern New England (Maine, New Hampshire, and Vermont). We will identify the locally produced fruits and vegetables with the highest probability of profitable production in northern New England, and to identify issues in consumer preferences for local/organic/sustainably grown produce and the potential premium these products command. We will construct an integrated extension component in all three states which will coordinate involvement of stakeholder groups, and provide foundation for the consumer surveys and integrate project results into current and future extension programming dealing with small producers and marketers in this predominantly rural region. Co-PI, Examining Farm Labor Decisions on Long-term Profitability and Farm Enterprise Development, USDA, National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA), Agriculture and Food Research Initiative (AFRI), Foundational Integrated Program - Small and Medium Sized Farms, $500,000, July 1, 2014 to June 30, 2017. Summary: The goal of this project is to identify the relationships among farm labor decision-making, profitability, household dynamics (goals and needs, demographics), optimal diversification balance (i.e. number of unique enterprises) and scale of production, marketing channel, and maintenance or enhancement of quality of life on small and mid-size farms in rural communities such as Vermont and other states.

Publications

  • Type: Journal Articles Status: Published Year Published: 2015 Citation: 1. Liang, C. (2015). What Policy Options Seem to Make the Most Sense for Local Food? Choices, a publication of the Agricultural and Applied Economics Association. 1st quarter 2015, 30(1). Available online http://www.choicesmagazine.org/choices-magazine/theme-articles/community-economics-of-local-foods/what-policy-options-seem-to-make-the-most-sense-for-local-food
  • Type: Journal Articles Status: Published Year Published: 2014 Citation: 2. Liang, C. & Dunn, P. (2014). Entrepreneurial Profile, Characteristics, Expectations, and Outcomes  An empirical Study to Compare Rural Entrepreneurs with Urban Entrepreneurs, American Journal of Entrepreneurship, Special Issue: Rural Entrepreneurship, Vol. 7, Issue 2, pp. 79-100
  • Type: Journal Articles Status: Published Year Published: 2014 Citation: 3. Liang, C. & Dunn, P. (2014). Examining entrepreneurial characteristics, motivations, barriers, and outcomes for small versus large multifunctional farm enterprises in New England, Journal of Business and Entrepreneurship, pp 64-94.
  • Type: Journal Articles Status: Published Year Published: 2014 Citation: 4. Brown, J., Goetz, S., Ahearn, A., & Liang, C. (2014). Linkages between community focused agriculture, farm sales, and regional growth, Economic Development Quarterly. Available online http://edq.sagepub.com/content/early/2013/10/12/0891242413506610
  • Type: Journal Articles Status: Published Year Published: 2014 Citation: 5. Liang, C. & Dunn, P. (2014). Discovering heterogeneity of entrepreneursA comparison of food and non-food entrepreneurs, Academy of Entrepreneurship Journal. Vol. 20, No. 2, pp. 19-31.
  • Type: Journal Articles Status: Published Year Published: 2013 Citation: 7. Thilmany, D., Conner, D., Curtis, K., Liang, K., Mulik, K., OHara, J., Sullins, M., & Woods, T. (2013). Researching market and supply-chain opportunities for local foods systems: Setting priorities and identifying linkages. Journal of Agriculture, Food Systems, and Community Development. Advance online publication. http://dx.doi.org/10.5304/jafscd.2013.034.018
  • Type: Journal Articles Status: Published Year Published: 2012 Citation: 8. Liang, C. & Dunn, P. (2012). Entrepreneurial learning and business assessment--What new decisions would be made after learning? Journal of Business and Entrepreneurship, Vol. 24, No. 1, pp. 105-122.
  • Type: Journal Articles Status: Published Year Published: 2011 Citation: 9. Liang, C. & Dunn, P. (2011). Satisfaction or Business Savvy  Examining the Outcome of New Venture Creation with Respect to Entrepreneurial Characteristics, Expectation, Optimism, Realism, and Pessimism, Academy of Entrepreneurship, Vol. 17, No. 2, pp 97-116 .
  • Type: Books Status: Published Year Published: 2014 Citation: 1. Liang, C. (2014). American journal of Entrepreneurship, Special Issue: Rural Entrepreneurship. Guest Editor.
  • Type: Books Status: Published Year Published: 2015 Citation: 3. Liang, C., Goetz, S., Brown, C. & Singh-Knights, D. (2015). The 16th National Value added and Northeast Regional What Works Joint Conference Proceedings, available on line http ://aese.psu.edu/nercrd/publications/what-works-2014-proceedings/what-works-iii-conference-proceedings
  • Type: Books Status: Published Year Published: 2012 Citation: 5. Liang, C. and Goetz, S. (2012). What Works  Entrepreneurship and Community Development in the Northeast, Northeast Regional Center for Rural Development, http://nercrd.psu.edu/Publications/rdppapers/rdp52.pdf
  • Type: Book Chapters Status: Published Year Published: 2013 Citation: 1. Liang, C. Chapter 2 Innovative Marketing Strategies using Network Analysis, Innovations in Services Marketing and Management: Strategies for Emerging Economies, Editor: Anita Goyal, 2013, IGI Global Publishing. ISSN: 2327-5502.
  • Type: Book Chapters Status: Published Year Published: 2012 Citation: 2. Liang, C. Chapter Volume III, Chapter 2: Conducting a Market Analysis for a Social Venture. Social Entrepreneurship (Four volume set), Editor: Thomas S. Lyons, Ph.D., Baruch College, City University of New York, Publisher: Praeger/ABC-CLIO, Santa Barbara, CA (2012)
  • Type: Conference Papers and Presentations Status: Published Year Published: 2015 Citation: 1. Liang, C. (2015). Influence of Network Sciences on Food Industry: A Comparison of Local, Regional, and National Perspectives, Hawaii University International Conferences on Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts, Math and Education, June 13-15, Honolulu, Hawaii.
  • Type: Conference Papers and Presentations Status: Published Year Published: 2015 Citation: 2. Liang, C. & Wieland, C. (2015). Evaluating Impacts of Experiential Learning  The Case Study of Growing Vermont, Hawaii University International Conferences on Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts, Math and Education, June 13-15, Honolulu, Hawaii.
  • Type: Conference Papers and Presentations Status: Published Year Published: 2015 Citation: 1. Liang, C. & Dunn, P. (2015). Linking Farm Entrepreneurs Demographics to Multifunctional Agriculture (MFA) Strategy: Evidences from New England Farm Survey, Proceedings, National Small Business Institute Conference, February 11-14, St Petes Beach, Florida.
  • Type: Conference Papers and Presentations Status: Published Year Published: 2012 Citation: 2. Liang, C. (2012). The Circle of Life for Organic Farming in Vermont, Northeast Organic Farming Association of New York, Winter Conference and Research Symposium, Saratoga Springs, NY, January.
  • Type: Conference Papers and Presentations Status: Published Year Published: 2015 Citation: 2. Liang, C. (2015). Multifunctional Agriculture in New England  Situation and Future Outlook, Northeast Agricultural and Resource Economics Association annual meeting, Newport, Rhode Island, June 28-30.
  • Type: Conference Papers and Presentations Status: Published Year Published: 2015 Citation: 6. Liang, C. & Duncan, S. (2015). Regional Food Networks Workshops, The What-Why-How of Value-Added in a Regional Context, 2015 National Agricultural Value Added Conference, May 18-20, Austin, Texas.
  • Type: Conference Papers and Presentations Status: Published Year Published: 2015 Citation: 7. Liang, C. Dunn, P. (2015). Exploring the Relationships between Off Farm Employment, Multifunctionality, Economic Mobility, and Rural Development, Poster Presentation, Federal Reserve Banks Conference, Washington DC, April 3-5.
  • Type: Other Status: Published Year Published: 2012 Citation: 1. Liang, C. and Michahelles, M. (2012). We Eat Where We Live  The Role of Consumer Coops in Local Food Distribution, Resources, Western Regional Center for Rural Development, May 2012.
  • Type: Conference Papers and Presentations Status: Published Year Published: 2015 Citation: 8. Liang, C. & Dunn, P. (2015). Linking Farm Entrepreneurs Demographics to Multifunctional Agriculture (MFA) Strategy: Evidences from New England Farm Survey, National Small Business Institute conference, Presentation, February 11-14, St. Petes Beach, Florida.
  • Type: Conference Papers and Presentations Status: Published Year Published: 2015 Citation: 9. Liang, C. (2015). Training and Educating Grass-Root Leaders in Food System and Rural Development for the 22nd Century Utilizing the Teen Reaching Youth (TRY) Model: TRY for Farm, Food, and Energy, Best Practices, National Small Business Institute conference, Presentation, February 11-14, St. Petes Beach, Florida.
  • Type: Conference Papers and Presentations Status: Published Year Published: 2014 Citation: 10. Liang, C. & Dunn, P. (2014). Examining Entrepreneurial Characteristics, Motivations, Barriers, and Outcomes for Small versus Large Multifunctional Farm Enterprises in New England, Presentation, Association for Small Business and Entrepreneurship Conference, September 24-26, Memphis, TN.
  • Type: Conference Papers and Presentations Status: Published Year Published: 2014 Citation: 13. Marasteanu, I., Liang, C., Goetz, S., Ahearn, M., & Brown, J. (2014). Spatial and Cluster Analysis for Multifunctional Agriculture in New England Region, Poster, Applied and Agricultural Economics Association, 2014 annual meeting, Minneapolis, MN.
  • Type: Conference Papers and Presentations Status: Published Year Published: 2014 Citation: 14. Marasteanu, I., Liang, C., & Goetz, S. (2014). How Does Multifunctional Agriculture Contribute to Rural Development? Poster, Applied and Agricultural Economics Association, 2014 annual meeting, Minneapolis, MN.
  • Type: Other Status: Published Year Published: 2014 Citation: 15. Liang, C. (2014). Multifunctional Agriculture in New England  Implications on Vermont Tourism Industry and Rural Development, Webinar, June 4, 2014.
  • Type: Conference Papers and Presentations Status: Published Year Published: 2014 Citation: 16. Liang, C. & Pescatore, M. (2014). Influences of Social Networks on Food Choices: A Comparison of Local, Regional, and National Perspectives, AAEA/CAE Network Symposium, Montreal, Canada, May 28-30.
  • Type: Conference Papers and Presentations Status: Published Year Published: 2014 Citation: 18. Liang, C. & Dunn, P. (2014). Approaches to helping educators and students learn about entrepreneurship, Workshop, 38th National Small Business Institute Conference, Las Vagus, Nevada, Feb 13-15.
  • Type: Conference Papers and Presentations Status: Published Year Published: 2013 Citation: 20. Liang, C. and Su, Flora. (2013). Understanding the Relationship between Multifunctional Agriculture, Community Resilience, and Rural Development and Resilience, Poster Presentation, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association, Washington, DC, August 4-6.
  • Type: Conference Papers and Presentations Status: Published Year Published: 2013 Citation: 21. Liang, C. and Su, Flora. (2013). Understanding the Relationship Between Multifunctional Agriculture, Community Resilience, and Rural Development and Resilience, Poster Presentation, Federal Reserve System Conference, Washington, DC, April 10-12.
  • Type: Conference Papers and Presentations Status: Published Year Published: 2013 Citation: 22. Liang, C. and Slone, T. (2013). Multifunctional Agriculture in New England  Financial Implications, poster presentation, 2013 Northeast Organic Farm Association conference, Burlington, Vermont, Feb 15-17.
  • Type: Conference Papers and Presentations Status: Published Year Published: 2013 Citation: 23. Liang, C. and Dunn, P. (2013). Buy Local - Restaurant Owners Perceptions, Importance for Practitioners, and Policy Implications, 2013 Small Business Institute Conference, St. Pete Beach, Florida, February 14-17.
  • Type: Other Status: Published Year Published: 2013 Citation: 24. Liang, C. (2012). Multifunctional Farms in New England and Implications to Rural Development, webinar, eExtension, University of Vermont http://www.uvm.edu/tourismresearch/agritourism/
  • Type: Conference Papers and Presentations Status: Published Year Published: 2012 Citation: 25. Liang, (2012). Do Networks Improve the Long Term Profitability for Winery Owners? Presented in the 2012 American Wine Economist Association Conference, Princeton University, New Jersey, USA.
  • Type: Conference Papers and Presentations Status: Published Year Published: 2012 Citation: 26. Liang, C. (2012). The Circle of Life for Organic Farming in Vermont, Northeast Organic Farming Association of New York, Winter Conference and Research Symposium, Saratoga Springs, NY, January.
  • Type: Conference Papers and Presentations Status: Published Year Published: 2012 Citation: 30. Liang, C. (2012). Agritourism in New England, Applied and Agricultural Economics Association Annual Meeting, Seattle, Washington, August.
  • Type: Conference Papers and Presentations Status: Published Year Published: 2012 Citation: 31. Liang, C., Su, F., Dunn, P., and Pescatore, M. (2012). Exploring Situations of the Community-Based Multifunctional Agriculture in the New England Region, Applied and Agricultural Economics Association Annual Meeting, Seattle, Washington, August.
  • Type: Conference Papers and Presentations Status: Published Year Published: 2011 Citation: 37. Liang, C. (2011). A Life Case Study of Hardwick, Vermont  Multifunctional Farm Operation and Long Term Profitability for Small and Medium Sized Farm, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association Annual Meeting, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, July.
  • Type: Conference Papers and Presentations Status: Published Year Published: 2011 Citation: 39. Liang, C. (2011). Agri-tourism in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, National Tourism Extension Conference, Charleston, South Carolina, March.
  • Type: Conference Papers and Presentations Status: Published Year Published: 2011 Citation: 40. Liang, C.; Ahearn, M.; Brown, J. & Goetz, S. (2011). Multifunctional Farm Enterprises - Improving Long Term Sustainability and Prosperity for Small and Medium-Sized Farms and Rural Communities, Poster, National Tourism Extension Conference, Charleston, South Carolina, March.
  • Type: Theses/Dissertations Status: Published Year Published: 2013 Citation: Pescatore, M. (2012). Exploring Situations of the Community-Based Multifunctional Agriculture in the New England Region, Department of Community Development and Applied Economics, University of Vermont. MS Thesis.
  • Type: Conference Papers and Presentations Status: Published Year Published: 2012 Citation: Brown, J.P., Goetz, S.J., Fleming, D.A. 2012. "Multifunctional Agriculture and Farm Viability in the United States." Selected Paper presented at the Agricultural & Applied Economics Association's Annual Meeting. Seattle, WA, August 12-14.


Progress 06/30/13 to 06/29/14

Outputs
Target Audience: Between 2013 and 2014, the research team interviewed 350-400 producers, service providers, and policy makers to gather information regarding different aspects of multifunctional agriculture and their impacts on community programs and development. More than 1,200 students, researchers, teachers, and extension educators/program leadersfrom colleges, technical schools, and K-12 schools participated in workshops, courses, and special events (Love and Entrepreneur Day, National Value Added Agriculture Conference). More than 200 representatives from American Farm Bureau, Farm Credit Union, and other supporting organizations attended workshops and training sessions. More than 300 community partners and organizations working with multifunctional farmers participated in webinars, presentations, and training sessions. Finally over 1,000 consumers/households completed a semi-structured survey and this survey will continue in 2014-2015. Changes/Problems: Nothing Reported What opportunities for training and professional development has the project provided? The largest training opportunity this project offered was the joint conference between the National Value Added Agriculture conference and the Northeast Regional What Works conference held in Baltimore, Maryland in May 2014. This conference offered 6 workshops, 21 posters, and 36 oral presentations to share information about best practices in multifunctional agriculture across the county. Over 15 individual presentations and workshops were also offered through conferences such a Vermont Tourism Industry Annual Meeting. How have the results been disseminated to communities of interest? The results of the surveys and interviews have been shared with over 2,000 people (most of them are stakeholders) in more than 20 events. What do you plan to do during the next reporting period to accomplish the goals? We plan to complete the state-level reports and regional-level reports using the producer survey results. We also plan to complete consumer surveys by the end of December 2014, and complete analysis and reporting/presentations by June 30, 2015. Many presentations and publications are under preparation.

Impacts
What was accomplished under these goals? We have developed an inventory through a census survey with all 30,000 agricultural producers in New England. The New England NASS office provided support to design, print, and mail the surveys. Over 25 farm organizations in New England and other regions were interviewed to gather information about understanding and practices of multifunctional agriculture. Over 20 presentations and pubications utilized county level data and/or primary survey data to explain the location of multifunctional fams, the relationships of multifunctional farms to communities and other amenities (recreational sites, lodging establishments, primaty and secondary highway, etc.), and the network distribuions between multifunctional farms and other community-based organizations. Using the logistic regression analysis, several articles reported comparison and differences across regions with respect to multifunctional agriculture particularly focusing on income, employment, and economic growth/changes. More analysis will be completed to determine the levels of economic integration between farm household production of traditional and nontradtional products and services, off-farm work and its relationships to local economy, and examine consumer preferences and levels of support to multifunctional agriculture at local and regional levels.

Publications

  • Type: Conference Papers and Presentations Status: Published Year Published: 2013 Citation: 5. Liang, C. and Su, Flora. (2013). Understanding the Relationship Between Multifunctional Agriculture, Community Resilience, and Rural Development and Resilience, Poster Presentation, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association, Washington, DC, August 4-6.
  • Type: Conference Papers and Presentations Status: Published Year Published: 2013 Citation: 6. Liang, C. and Su, Flora. (2013). Understanding the Relationship Between Multifunctional Agriculture, Community Resilience, and Rural Development and Resilience, Poster Presentation, Federal Reserve System Conference, Washington, DC, April 10-12.
  • Type: Conference Papers and Presentations Status: Published Year Published: 2013 Citation: 7. Liang, C. and Slone, T. (2013). Multifunctional Agriculture in New England  Financial Implications, poster presentation, 2013 Northeast Organic Farm Association conference, Burlington, Vermont, Feb 15-17.
  • Type: Conference Papers and Presentations Status: Published Year Published: 2013 Citation: 8. Liang, C. and Dunn, P. (2013). Buy Local - Restaurant Owners Perceptions, Importance for Practitioners, and Policy Implications, 2013 Small Business Institute Conference, St. Pete Beach, Florida, February 14-17.
  • Type: Theses/Dissertations Status: Published Year Published: 2013 Citation: Pestacore, M. (2013) Multifunctional Agriculture in New England - Situations, Distribution, and Outlook. MS Thesis. University of Vermont. Department of Community Development and Applied Economics. Adviser: K. Liang
  • Type: Other Status: Published Year Published: 2014 Citation: 1. Jack and the Beanstalk  A Modern Day Secret to Success, 2014 Northeastern Regional Association of State Agricultural Experiment Station Directors Meeting, Baltimore, Maryland, May 11-12, 2014.
  • Type: Other Status: Published Year Published: 2014 Citation: 2. Multifunctional Agriculture and Implications on Tourism Development, Vermont Travel Industry Conference, Manchester, Vermont, March 13-14, 2014.
  • Type: Other Status: Published Year Published: 2014 Citation: 3. Multifunctional Agriculture and Rural Development, University of Hawaii, January 31  February 5, 2014.
  • Type: Other Status: Published Year Published: 2013 Citation: 4. Community Based Agriculture - Opportunities for Rural Development and Entrepreneurship, 2013 USDA invited presentation, Washington DC, Feb 20.
  • Type: Other Status: Published Year Published: 2014 Citation: 1. Across the Fence, UVM Entrepreneurship Courses and Business Plan Competition, June 12, 2014 http://www.uvm.edu/extension/atfence/?m=201406
  • Type: Other Status: Published Year Published: 2014 Citation: 2. Investment of a Lifetime, Vermont Quarterly, May 2014 http://www.uvm.edu/vq/?Page=news&storyID=%2018281&category=vqcourse
  • Type: Other Status: Published Year Published: 2014 Citation: 3. UVM Marketing Club Interview, Perceptions on Budgeting and Financial Analysis  Impacts on UVM Marketing Club, April 23, 2014
  • Type: Other Status: Published Year Published: 2014 Citation: 4. Dollar Enterprise wins Best Practices Award, Northeast Regional Center for Rural Development, http://aese.psu.edu/nercrd/news/2014/dollar-enterprise-wins-best-practices-award
  • Type: Other Status: Published Year Published: 2014 Citation: 5. The Other Paper, Business Section: Love an Entrepreneur Day, Feb 13, 2014.
  • Type: Other Status: Published Year Published: 2013 Citation: 6. Mims, Sherry, Tracking Autumn Foods to the Source, AAA TravelViews, September 13, 2013, http://ww3.aaa.com/travelviews/2013/09/13/tracking-autumn-foods-to-the-source/
  • Type: Other Status: Published Year Published: 2013 Citation: 1. Taylor Slone (2012-2014), Multifunctional Agriculture in New England (as Primary Research Advisor) 2014 UVM Outstanding Undergraduate Research Award, College of Agriculture and Life Sciences.
  • Type: Other Status: Published Year Published: 2013 Citation: 2. Taylor Slone (2013), Outstanding Undergraduate Paper Award 6th place, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association. Paper Adviser.
  • Type: Journal Articles Status: Published Year Published: 2014 Citation: 1. Brown, J., Goetz, S., Ahearn, A., & Liang, C. (2014). Linkages between Community Focused Agriculture, Farm Sales, and Regional Growth, Economic Development Quarterly. Available online http://edq.sagepub.com/content/early/2013/10/12/0891242413506610
  • Type: Journal Articles Status: Published Year Published: 2014 Citation: 2. Liang, C. & Dunn, P. (2014). Discovering heterogeneity of entrepreneursA comparison of food and non-food entrepreneurs, Academy of Entrepreneurship Journal. Vol. 20, No. 2, pp. 37-61.
  • Type: Journal Articles Status: Published Year Published: 2013 Citation: 3. Liang, C. & Dunn, P. (2013) The Love of My Life or The Life I Love  Investigating impacts of new venture creation on marriage. Journal of Business and Entrepreneurship. Vol. 5, pp. 95-114.
  • Type: Journal Articles Status: Published Year Published: 2013 Citation: 4. Thilmany, D., Conner, D., Curtis, K., Liang, K., Mulik, K., OHara, J., Sullins, M., & Woods, T. (2013). Researching market and supply-chain opportunities for local foods systems: Setting priorities and identifying linkages. Journal of Agriculture, Food Systems, and Community Development. Advance online publication. http://dx.doi.org/10.5304/jafscd.2013.034.018
  • Type: Books Status: Published Year Published: 2014 Citation: 1. Liang, C. (2014). Dollar Enterprise  From Theory to Reality and an Experiential Learning Exercise Applying Community Entrepreneurship to Plan and Operate a Small Venture on Campus, 5th Edition, Kendall Hunt Publishing Company, USA. ISBN: 978-1-4652-4104-7
  • Type: Books Status: Published Year Published: 2013 Citation: 2. Liang, C. (2013). Dollar Enterprise  From Theory to Reality and an Experiential Learning, 4th Edition, Kendall Hunt Publishing Company, USA. ISBN: 978-1-4652-1285-6
  • Type: Book Chapters Status: Published Year Published: 2013 Citation: 1. Liang, C. Chapter 2 Innovative Marketing Strategies using Network Analysis, Innovations in Services Marketing and Management: Strategies for Emerging Economies, Editor: Anita Goyal, 2013, IGI Global Publishing. ISSN: 2327-5502.
  • Type: Conference Papers and Presentations Status: Published Year Published: 2014 Citation: 1. Liang, C. & Pescatore, M. (2014). Influences of Social Networks on Food Choices: A Comparison of Local, Regional, and National Perspectives, AAEA/CAE Network Symposium, Montreal, Canada, May 28-30.
  • Type: Conference Papers and Presentations Status: Published Year Published: 2014 Citation: 2. Liang, C. (2014). Dollar Enterprise  When dream (or nightmare) come true. Best Practices Competition, 38th National Small Business Institute Conference, Las Vagus, Nevada, Feb 13-15.
  • Type: Conference Papers and Presentations Status: Published Year Published: 2014 Citation: 3. Liang, C. & Dunn, P. (2014). Approaches to helping educators and students learn about entrepreneurship, Workshop, 38th National Small Business Institute Conference, Las Vagus, Nevada, Feb 13-15.
  • Type: Conference Papers and Presentations Status: Published Year Published: 2013 Citation: 4. Liang, C. & Dunn, P. (2013). The love of my life or the life I love  Understanding impacts of new venture creation on marriage. 2014 Association of Small Business and Entrepreneurship annual meeting. New Orleans, Louisiana. October 7-9.


Progress 06/30/12 to 06/29/13

Outputs
Target Audience: Target audience reached by the project PI and Co-PIs included: at least 50,000 producers in the United States (through professional presentations, technical publications, workshops, and webinars), 5,000 researchers/educators/teachers/service providers/community organization leaders (through professional presentations, conferences, phone contacts, email exchange, webinars, and publications), 2,000 students (undergraduate, granduate, and K-12 schools, through field work, community service projects, case competitions, mini-enterprise competitions and showcases). Changes/Problems: Nothing Reported What opportunities for training and professional development has the project provided? We offered 3 webinars in the past year to producers, educators, and scientists. Each webinar was designed to introduce a specific topic of the project, and training materials were also designed for different topics. For example, we presented the distribution of types of multifunctional operations in New England region. We also offered 3 workshops throughout the year in 3 professional conferences – What Works in 2011, NOFA-NY conference in 2012, and Hawaii Producer Annual Meeting in 2012. Over 15,000 producers in 3 conferences received the training materials and contact information. How have the results been disseminated to communities of interest? We participated and organized 3 webinars, 11 conference presentations, 3 program workshops, 4 invited lectures, and other media news release. What do you plan to do during the next reporting period to accomplish the goals? We are in the process to design and conduct customer surveys. We plan to use a combination of secondary data (National Consumer Survey Panel data and other sources) and primary targeted surveys to gather information regarding customers' preferences, participations, and satisfaction with products and services offered by multifunctional farms in New England and other regions. We are also in the process of conducting ecosystem study to gather detailed farm data of management, operation, practice, technology applications, and any other applications that have potential impacts on environmental quality and ecosystem quality.

Impacts
What was accomplished under these goals? We have accomplished three goals in this project: 1. Our farm survey information was used to create an inventory of all farms in New England with respect to their involvement in multifunctional agriculture. We were able to collect information from over 27,000 farmers in the NASS database with respect to farm household characteristics and profile, entrepreneurial parameters (motivation, triggering events, opportunities, resource availability, skills and knowledge, expectations, and impacts of multifunctional agriculture on well-being). We also collected information about their products and services directly linking to market values, such as income and expenses of farming and other activities, production and management strategies, marketing channel, financial outcomes, institutional supports, and challenges and barriers to be engaged in multifunctional agriculture. 2. We completed regional analysis using Census data to match with multifunctional agriculture operations in New England and other regions in the United States. We found that there was no statistically significant association between multifunctional agriculture and growth in total agricultural sales between 2002 and 2007 at the national level. Direct sales for human consumption were linked with total farm sales in the New England and Mideast regions. Agritourism was complementary to production in the Great Lakes and Southeast regions, but it was negatively associated with growth in farm sales in New England region. On an annualized basis, we found that a one dollar increase in total agricultural sales led to a $0.04 increase in county personal income. Overall, our findings suggested that multifunctional agriculture was unlikely to make significant contributions to economics growth given the small scale and numbers of farms operating in a much diversified profile. 3. We were able to design and modify our original definition and theoretical framework of multifunctional agriculture to include ecosystem estimations. The ecosystem parameters will include farm management and practices, soil treatment, system implementation for environmental protections, and other strategies to sustain/maintain biodiversity on working landscape.

Publications

  • Type: Book Chapters Status: Published Year Published: 2012 Citation: Liang, C. Chapter Volume III, Chapter 2: Conducting a Market Analysis for a Social Venture. Social Entrepreneurship (Four volume set), Editor: Thomas S. Lyons, Ph.D., Baruch College, City University of New York, Publisher: Praeger/ABC-CLIO, Santa Barbara, CA (2012)
  • Type: Book Chapters Status: Accepted Year Published: 2012 Citation: Liang, C. Chapter MarketMaker - an Innovative Network-Oriented Services Marketing Program in the United States", Innovations in Services Marketing and Management: Strategies for Emerging Economies, Editor: Anita Goyal, forthcoming in 2013-2014.
  • Type: Books Status: Published Year Published: 2012 Citation: 1. Liang, C. (2013). Dollar Enterprise  From Theory to Reality and an Experiential Learning, 4th Edition, Kendall Hunt Publishing Company, USA. ISBN: 978-1-4652-1285-6 2. Liang, C. and Goetz, S. (2012). What Works  Entrepreneurship and Community Development in the Northeast, Northeast Regional Center for Rural Development, http://nercrd.psu.edu/Publications/rdppapers/rdp52.pdf
  • Type: Journal Articles Status: Published Year Published: 2012 Citation: 1. Brown, J., Goetz, S., Ahearn, A., & Liang, C. (2013) accepted. Linkages between Community Focused Agriculture, Farm Sales, and Regional Growth, Economic Development Quarterly. 2. Liang, C. & Dunn, P. (2012). Entrepreneurial learning and business assessment--What new decisions would be made after learning? Journal of Business and Entrepreneurship, Vol. 24, No. 1, pp. 105-122.
  • Type: Other Status: Published Year Published: 2012 Citation: Liang, C. and Michahelles, M. (2012). We Eat Where We Live  The Role of Consumer Coops in Local Food Distribution, Resources, Western Regional Center for Rural Development, May 2012. Liang, C. (2012). The Circle of Life for Organic Farming in Vermont, Northeast Organic Farming Association of New York, Winter Conference and Research Symposium, Saratoga Springs, NY, January. Liang, C. (2012). Where Does Vermont Milk Go? Northeast Organic Farming Association of New York, Winter Conference and Research Symposium, Saratoga Springs, NY, January. Liang, C. (2011). A Life Case of Hardwick, Vermont - Approach to Improve Long Term Sustainability for Small and Medium-Sized Farms and Rural Communities, 2011 American Applied Economics Association Annual Meeting, July 24-26, 2011, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania http://ageconsearch.umn.edu/handle/103687 Liang, C. & Dunn, P. (2011). Entrepreneurship and Small Business Professors Reaction to Selected Entrepreneurial and Small Business Financial Planning and Management Concepts, Small Business Institute Annual Meeting, Bonita Spring, Florida, February.
  • Type: Other Status: Published Year Published: 2012 Citation: 1. Liang, C. and Su, Flora. (2013). Understanding the Relationship Between Multifunctional Agriculture, Community Resilience, and Rural Development and Resilience, Poster Presentation, Federal Reserve System Conference, Washington, DC, April 10-12. 2. Liang, C. and Slone, T. (2013). Multifunctional Agriculture in New England  Financial Implications, poster presentation, 2013 Northeast Organic Farm Association conference, Burlington, Vermont, Feb 15-17. 3. Liang, C. and Dunn, P. (2013). Buy Local - Restaurant Owners Perceptions, Importance for Practitioners, and Policy Implications, 2013 Small Business Institute Conference, St. Pete Beach, Florida, February 14-17. 4. Liang, C. (2012). Multifunctional Farms in New England and Implications to Rural Development, webinar, eExtension, University of Vermont http://www.uvm.edu/tourismresearch/agritourism/ 5. Liang, (2012). Do Networks Improve the Long Term Profitability for Winery Owners? Presented in the 2012 American Wine Economist Association Conference, Princeton University, New Jersey, USA. 6. Liang, C. (2012). The Circle of Life for Organic Farming in Vermont, Northeast Organic Farming Association of New York, Winter Conference and Research Symposium, Saratoga Springs, NY, January. 7. Liang, C. (2012). Where Does Vermont Milk Go? Northeast Organic Farming Association of New York, Winter Conference and Research Symposium, Saratoga Springs, NY, January. 8. Liang, C. & Dunn, P. (2012). Examining Debt Finance and Performance: Does Small Businesses Owners Profile Matter? Small Business Institute Annual Meeting, San Antonio, TX, February. 9. Liang, C. (2012). Dollar Enterprise  Integrating Experiential Learning in Teaching Community Entrepreneurship, Applied and Agricultural Economics Association Annual Meeting, Seattle, Washington, August. 10. Liang, C. (2012). Agritourism in New England, Applied and Agricultural Economics Association Annual Meeting, Seattle, Washington, August. 11. Liang, C., Su, F., Dunn, P., and Pescatore, M. (2012). Exploring Situations of the Community-Based Multifunctional Agriculture in the New England Region, Applied and Agricultural Economics Association Annual Meeting, Seattle, Washington, August. 12. Liang, C. (2012), To Nest In Wind  Discovering Challenges and Rewards for Young Professionals, Workshop, Applied and Agricultural Economics Association Annual Meeting, Seattle, Washington, August. 13. Laing, C. (2012), When Conformers Meet Non-conformers  Balancing Life and Career, Workshop, Applied and Agricultural Economics Association Annual Meeting, Seattle, Washington, August. 14. Community Based Agriculture - Opportunities for Rural Development and Entrepreneurship, 2013 USDA invited presentation, Washington DC, Feb 20. 15. Community-Based Multifunctional Farms in New England and Implications for Rural Development, 2012 ESS/SAES/ARD Meeting and Workshop, Portsmouth, New Hampshire, September. 16. Multifunctional Farm Operation as Strategies to Improve Long Term Farm Profitability, USDA, Economic Research Services, May 2012. 17. Multifunctional Farms in New England, Vermont Farms Association Annual Meeting, Pittsford, Vermont, February 2012.


Progress 07/01/11 to 06/29/12

Outputs
OUTPUTS: This project was designed to study and analyze (1) types of entrepreneurial business activities that farmers choose to do besides conventional farming; (2) why farmers choose to be engaged in entrepreneurial activities; (3) how their decisions impact on farm income and personal/family satisfaction; and (4) how entrepreneurial farmers influence community economic development. We have presented papers, posters, and workshops in 2011 to describe the theoretical framework, hypotheses, objectives, and expected outcomes. We began conducting the screening survey with all New England farmers in October 2011. The follow-up detailed farm survey has been designed and will be mailed to a sample of farmers in New England in 2012. Customer/visitor survey will be designed in 2012 and will be sent to customers/visitors through farmers in 2012 and 2013. Other data used in this project will include USDA ARMS data and county data. PARTICIPANTS: Ahearn, Mary, USDA, ERS Brown, Jason, USDA, ERS Goetz, Stephan, Northeast Regional Center for Rural Development and Pennsylvania State University TARGET AUDIENCES: farmers, community leaders, community service providers, policy makers, researchers, extension educators PROJECT MODIFICATIONS: Not relevant to this project.

Impacts
There has not been a study to estimate entrepreneurial farm activities at farm level, regional level, and national level. Policy makers need to understand the impacts of entrepreneurial farm activities on farm income, community financial situation, and employment. Farmers need information to establish innovative business models that will create more opportunities in the future. Community organizations need to know how to support and assist farmers and other enterprises to be entrepreneurial.

Publications

  • Liang, C.; Ahearn, M.; Brown, J. & Goetz, S. (2011). Multifunctional Farm Enterprises - Improving Long Term Sustainability and Prosperity for Small and Medium - Sized Farms and Rural Communities, Poster, USDA, AFRI program conference, Miami, Florida, November.
  • Liang, C. (2011). A Life Case Study of Hardwick, Vermont - Multifunctional Farm Operation and Long Term Profitability for Small and Medium Sized Farm, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association Annual Meeting, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, July.
  • Liang, C.; Ahearn, M.; Brown, J. & Goetz, S. (2011). Multifunctional Farm Enterprises - Improving Long Term Sustainability and Prosperity for Small and Medium-Sized Farms and Rural Communities, Poster, National Tourism Extension Conference, Charleston, South Carolina, March.
  • Liang, C. & Dunn, P. (2011). Encouraging the Entrepreneurial Spirit among Small Farmers for Rural Tourism Development, Workshop, National Tourism Extension Conference, Charleston, South Carolina, March.
  • Multifunctional Farm Operation as Strategies to Improve Long Term Farm Profitability, The Northeast Regional Center for Rural Development and the Department of Agricultural Economics and Rural Sociology, Pennsylvania State University, State College, Pennsylvania, February 2011.