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UC SAREP announces new sustainable agriculture & food systems awards

The University of California Sustainable Agriculture Research & Education Program — a statewide program of UC Agriculture and Natural Resources — announced the recipients of its 2021 Sustainable Agriculture and Food Systems Small Grants Program today (April 12, 2021).

The grants program, which was reinstated this year after a 10-year hiatus, supports pilot projects focusing on strengthening California’s sustainable agriculture and food systems. Together, 11 recipients are receiving $77,000 in funding to support their work.

Building Institutional Markets for Plant-based Proteins

Building Institutional Markets for Plant-based Proteins


As part of its mission of sustainability in regional food systems, UC SAREP partners with communities to help ensure fresh, local food is finding its way to consumers through a growing number of channels, including Farm-to-Institution programs.

Bon voyage, Penny Leff, agritourism extraordinaire

After eleven years as UC ANR’s statewide Agritourism Coordinator, Penny Leff will be retiring on April 11th, 2021.   Bringing a creative approach to UC ANR.


Penny has spent her time at UC ANR working as a champion of all things that blend agriculture and tourism (“agritourism”).

Penny first brought her creative approach to UC ANR in 2009 when she joined the Small Farm Program, run by Cooperative Extension Specialist Shermain Hardesty.

Growing elderberries in hedgerows adds to farm income, benefits environment

As the sustainability of agriculture continues to be threatened by changes in climate, pests and loss of biodiversity, the ancient practice of planting hedgerows with edible and medicinal species such as elderberry can help growers generate additional revenue while fostering beneficial insects and improving soil health.