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Fostering Sustainability and Innovation in Agriculture
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Posts By Ron Russ

Paper Records Begone! Startup’s Organizational Software Helps Farmers Go Digital

December 3, 2012 |

You would think the only cloud a farmer would be interested in would be one that brings rain. However, with the start-up software company FarmLogs, farmers can now look to cloud-stored software to help organize, manage, research, and increase profitability on their farms. Co-Founders Jesse Vollmar and Brad Koch aim to change the way farmers keep and view their data, in the simplest and most effective way possible.

Based out of Ann Arbor, Michigan, Farmlogs was founded in January of 2012 by Jesse (CEO) and Brad (CTO) a year after the two graduated from Saginaw Valley State University. Read More

Santa Ynez Winery Embraces Biodynamic Practices to Tune of Increased Yields and Quality

October 31, 2012 |
Photo Credit: Ron Russ

Demetria Estate is a stunning Mediterranean-style winery located in California’s Santa Ynez Valley.  Demetria, which is family owned and operated, has grown their grapes using organic and biodynamic farming practices since 2005. I had the pleasure of sitting down with Alexis Zahoudanis, who oversees the day-to-day operations at Demetria. Alexis is the son of John and Sandra Zahoudanis, whose dreams of starting a winery were realized when they purchased the sizable land that they deemed perfect for winemaking in ‘05.

During my visit at Demetria, it quickly became apparent that before they could ever bottle their first wine, they needed to take a long and hard look at their soil. Read More

To Close Loop of Sustainability, Organic Farm Commits to Local and Seasonal Eating Education

October 17, 2012 |

Organic Bounty from McGrath Family Farm. Photo: Ron Russ.

Scanning the beautiful array of certified organic crops that thrive at McGrath Family Farms in Camarillo, you know you’re in the presence of something truly special.

Phil McGrath is a fourth-generation Southern California farmer whose great-grandfather, an Irish sheep farmer, first acquired this land back in 1868. Phil grew up around the farm as a child and ultimately knew that a commitment to a lasting McGrath farming legacy was what he wanted to dedicate his life to. But, his infectious passion and appreciation for the land and the process he calls “organic farming in paradise” speak of much more than familial duty and responsibility. Read More