Marie Raboin is a Conservation Specialist for Dane County, Wisconsin. She has spent over a decade working in and around southern Wisconsin to get farmers to adopt conservation practices. She currently serves as an advisor on the Grassland 2.0 project, and this summer she sat down for an interview with GrassCast, the Grassland 2.0 podcast.
In the latest episode of GrassCast, you’ll hear what Marie has learned in her time in the field, and how her current approach seeks to take advantage of farmer-to-farmer learning and the power of community. Marie talks about how she helped start a new farmer network called the BFFs (Biological Farming Friends), why she’s big on farmer dates, and why you maybe shouldn’t invite everyone to the meeting.
You can listen wherever you listen to podcasts, or on our website below:[podcast_embed client="buzzsprout" url="https://www.buzzsprout.com/1194875/9293511-i-m-big-on-farmer-dates-marie-raboin-on-the-importance-of-farmer-networks.js" ]
Marie now helps coordinate an innovative program in Dane County to pay farmers for establishing continuous cover, including managed grazing. Based on the federal Conservation Reserve Program, Dane County’s Continuous Cover program serves as a potential model for incentivizing managed grazing at the county scale. Marie reflects on the pros and cons of the program in the interview, and reminds us that in many cases, interpersonal and community dynamics can make or break a conservation initiative.
Here more from Marie and her approach to conservation in this video: