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December 18, 2017

SEMAP Annual Meeting Celebrates Growers in Southeastern MA and Local Food Security Efforts

SEMAP annual meeting

The Southeastern Massachusetts Agricultural Partnership (SEMAP) held its annual meeting on November 16th at the Groundwork! coworking facility in New Bedford, MA. SEMAP is a non-profit organization dedicated to preserving and expanding access to local food and sustainable farming in southeastern Massachusetts through research and education.

SEMAP’s work is incredibly important in supporting local farmers as well as promoting access to affordable, healthy food. In addition to workshops throughout the year and an annual Ag & Food Conference, SEMAP produces a local food and farm guide, helping to connect consumers and businesses to farmers in our region.

Collaborating with SEMAP to instrument local farms

ImpactLABS Food Security Lead Liz Wiley serves on the SEMAP board of directors, and works closely with the organization to provide our region’s growers with opportunities to test instrumentation that provides real-time data on critical natural resources: air, soil, and water. Food security pilots are designed to help small and mid-size growers to become more efficient with their resources and more precise with timing and rates of inputs in order to increase their productivity and profitability.

SEMAP Executive Director Karen Schwalbe serves on the ImpactLABS Advisory Board, helping to guide us in our mission to address grand challenges, specifically in the areas of food security and resource management.

The SEMAP Annual Meeting was a celebration of the thriving community of farmers and growers that produce food in our region. Our work with SEMAP has been hugely instrumental in helping us to connect with this community in a meaningful way. With each pilot project, we seek to find practical solutions that will have a positive impact on the resilience and profitability of small to medium-sized farms. In turn, pilot hosts provide valuable feedback and insight that allow us to improve our models and influence the development of future technology.