Patrons pick through piles of produce at the Phillippi Farmhouse Market in Sarasota County


The sustainable agriculture program focuses on providing education and demonstrations that promote the ecological use of resources and to develop direct marketing opportunities for Sarasota County's agricultural producers. This information is based on the best management practices for sustainable agricultural production that supports producers to achieve economic viability, environmental stewardship, and social responsibility. The Program also provides information to Sarasota County residents on agricultural awareness and local food system.

Learn more about sustainable agriculture with a free, online course from the USDA Sustainable Agriculture Research and Education Program. The course provides a basic understanding of sustainable agriculture and some of the "systems" approaches associated with it. The course is designed for farmers – from beginners to experienced agricultural producers – interested in transitioning to more sustainable practices. If you are a consumer or part of the allied industries, it will describe its goals and its relevance to your local food system; that is, from farm to plate. To start your education about sustainable agriculture, visit


The science of agroecology researches practices to achieve the goals of sustainable agriculture. Agroecology is the application of ecology to the design and management of a whole-system approach to agriculture and food systems development. It is based on traditional knowledge, alternative agriculture, and local food system experiences that link ecology, culture, economics, and society to sustain agricultural production, healthy environments, and viable food and farming communities. For more details about agroecology see the following PDF files:


Meet Local Sarasota Farmers on the March 18 Eat Local Farm Tour

The public is welcome to register for a March 18 bus tour of five innovative small farms in Sarasota County, an opportunity for locavores to meet local food growers on their farms and learn about this exciting aspect of the local food system. Register by Tuesday (March 13th) to save your spot for


SW Florida Small Farmers Network meets March 13 at Jubilee

Join us for a special March 13 meeting of the Southwest Florida Small Farmers Network at Jubilee Farm in Bradenton, and learn how farmer-to-farmer networks can help you. Farmer-to-farmer networks, like the Southwest Florida Small Farmers Network (SWFSFN), long have been effective grassroots approaches to help farmers distribute


2017 USDA ag census begins in December

Hi. I am Dr. Robert Kluson, the Extension agriculture agent of Sarasota County. I’m joining all my colleagues at UF/IFAS and the U.S. Department of Agriculture to encourage every producer in Sarasota County to respond to the 2017 Census of Agriculture. Collected every five years, the census is the only source of comprehensive and impartial agriculture data for every county in the nation. Those who serve farmers, ranchers and rural