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National Agroforestry Center publishes handbook

The Agriculture Department has released an agroforestry handbook that the agency says "contains information to help establish, manage and market agroforestry projects that are profitable and sustainable over time."

Agriculture Deputy Secretary Kathleen Merrigan noted in a news release Monday that the handbook, titled “Profitable Farms and Woodlands,” is written for underserved and limited resource farmers and woodland owners living in the Southeast, and includes five main agroforestry practices: alley cropping, forest farming, riparian buffer strips, silvopasture and windbreaks.

"Our emphasis on agroforestry helps focus on job creation, increasing rural prosperity, support local and regional food systems, and helps to guide stewardship of working farms and forests," Merrigan said.

USDA said that the handbook is the collaborative effort of a team of agroforestry specialists from the 1890 and 1862 Land Grant Universities and the USDA National Agroforestry Center, led by the 1890 Agroforestry Consortium. The Agroforestry Center is a partnership of the U.S. Forest Service and Natural Resources Conservation Service.