New Release: Sustainable Production and Use of On-Farm Energy

April 17, 2019

Missouri fruit grower Dan West hated seeing so much wasted fruit littering his orchard floor, and he worried about how the supply and price of fossil fuel affected his profitability. Seemingly unrelated problems, West found one solution to both. He began fermenting the waste fruit into wine and converting some of that wine into ethanol to run his farm equipment.

West’s concerns about energy supply and costs are shared by other growers around the country. As more farmers seek to reduce energy use and to increase agricultural efficiency, they are turning to renewable energy sources and sustainably produced biofuels.

Dan West next to a solar collector

Dan West harnesses the sun's rays to help produce ethanol from his orchard's excess fruit. Photo by Mary West

SARE’s new Sustainable Production and Use of On-Farm Energy topic room is a one-stop shop to help farmers pursue sustainable energy strategies on their farm or ranch, realizing reduced costs and increased profits. In the topic room, you will find guidebooks, videos, webinars and other free materials to help you learn about:

  • Growing and using biofuel feedstocks such as oilseeds, fruits and grass pellets
  • Creating biodiesel, ethanol and biofuels from anaerobic digestion
  • Generating affordable and renewable energy from solar and wind power

Sustainable Production and Use of On-Farm Energy also includes links to resources detailing regulations and financing options.

The use of sustainable energy in agriculture can allow farmers to reduce costs, generate long-term sources of income, use wasted product or minimize detrimental outputs. The resources found in Sustainable Production and Use of On-Farm Energy present agriculture the opportunity to increase the production of renewable energy on-farm.

Topics: Anaerobic Digestion, Energy, Solar Energy, Wind Power
Related Locations: North Central, Northeast, South, West