Farm Sustainability Extension Working Group Hires Extension Coordinator to Boost On-Farm Sustainability Awareness

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The Farm Sustainability Extension Working Group (FSEWG) announces that Jolene Noble of Manning, Alberta, has been hired as an extension coordinator to develop, coordinate, and implement an extension program to increase Alberta producers’ awareness of on-farm sustainability.

Organized by the FSEWG with funding support from Alberta Agriculture and Forestry’s Growing Forward 2 Program, this collaborative role is in place to address a growing need for the crop sector to meet high sustainability standards to maintain and expand international market competitiveness.

“Sustainable agriculture is becoming increasingly important in building market access opportunities and ensuring the long-term viability of our industry,” says Noble. “I look forward to contributing to these end-goals by working with producers to bring awareness to social license issues and highlighting on-farm best management practices.”

Noble brings extensive professional program coordination experience from the beef industry where she successfully managed programs for youth and advocacy. Additionally, she has actively participated in programs such as the McDonald’s Sustainability Pilot Project, Verified Beef Production, and the Environmental Farm Plan from a producer perspective on her family’s mixed farm.

In this position, Noble will support the crop commissions in better understanding farmer readiness with respect to internationally recognized sustainability standards and best management practices. This information will be derived via phone survey to be conducted by Ipsos Reid this summer, building on the information compiled through the Alberta Crops Sustainability Certification Pilot Project that was collaboratively delivered during the spring of 2015. Noble will subsequently develop and deliver coordinated extension programming to support the crop commissions’ membership in positioning their operations to meet current and emerging sustainability market standards.