Perspectives Online

Center for Environmental Farming Systemsí 2009 workshop series gets sponsor

Compass Group North America has been named the lead sponsor for the Center for Environmental Farming Systems’ (CEFS) Seasons of Sustainable Agriculture workshop series.

The Seasons of Sustainable Agriculture workshop series is a CEFS initiative to promote sustainable, community-based food systems, healthy communities and healthy economies. Through this series of education, extension and outreach programs offered annually, CEFS shares its knowledge and experience in sustainable agriculture with producers, agricultural professionals and the general public, enabling all citizens to take part in creating a vibrant future for agriculture.

The 2009 series began in February and will run through November. Among this year’s topics are workshops on organic crops, swine production research, blueberry pruning, vermicomposting, egg production in a range setting, community-based food systems and food safety. To learn about upcoming workshops, visit the Web site:

“We are so pleased to be partnering with Compass Group on our sustainable agriculture workshop series,” said Dr. Nancy Creamer, director of CEFS and N.C. State University College of Agriculture and Life Sciences’ horticultural science professor. “This is one company that is making a huge difference in the world by its continued work to influence the sustainability of production practices, especially in animal agriculture, and to raise awareness nationally of sustainable food systems issues.”

“There has never been a greater interest in locally based food systems than now as people question where their food comes from and the safety and ethics applied in food production,” said Cheryl Queen, vice president of communications for Compass Group. “We think the work done by CEFS is critical in raising awareness, providing education based on science-based research, and seeking solutions that benefit farmers, consumers and communities.”

Compass Group has been a supporter of CEFS, beginning with the sponsorship of Slow Food Founder Carlo Petrini’s visit to North Carolina in 2007. Compass Group supports sustainable agriculture and healthy rural economies with its Compass 360 initiative, including the Ag in the Middle program, supporting mid-sized farms in North Carolina and throughout the country.

About the Center for Environmental Farming Systems 
The Center for Environmental Farming Systems (CEFS) was established in 1994 by North Carolina State University and North Carolina A&T State University with the North Carolina Department of Agriculture & Consumer Services. These partners work closely with state and federal agencies, non-governmental organizations (for example, Carolina Farm Stewardship Association, Rural Advancement Foundation International, Farm Bureau), farmers and citizens to provide agricultural research, extension and education for North Carolina and beyond. The development of CEFS is a national model for partnership, innovation, and interdisciplinary cooperation.

For details on the Seasons of Sustainable Agriculture workshop series, please visit A downloadable brochure is available.

-- Natalie Hampton