Advancing Sustainability for communities across Minnesota
Your gift to The Minnesota Project will allow us to continue to champion the sustainable production and equitable distribution of energy and food in communities across Minnesota.
- Our programs are focused on the development, conservation and efficient use of renewable energy; farm practice and policy that promote profitable farms that protect and replenish the environment; and the production and consumption of local, sustainably grown foods.
- Through collaborative leadership we demonstrate practical solutions as a basis for future policy. Since 1978, we have fostered local empowerment, bridged diverse interests, encouraged shared values, and initiated working dialogues that create positive action and policy.
Agricultural Energy Efficiency
Minnesota's agricultural community is one of the state's largest users of energy. The Minnesota Project, through its new Agricultural Energy Efficiency Program, will work with farmers and utilities alike in navigating the obstacles related to on the ground implementation of energy efficiency improvements. The Minnesota Project hopes to address these obstacles through the following specific initiatives: Best Practices Guide, Implementation Handbook, Anaerobic Co-Digestion Guidebook, Centrally Located Energy Efficiency Resource Center, Farmer Outreach and Education Program, and Utility Outreach and Process Improvement Work Groups.
Fruits of the City Fruits of the City is a program of the Minnesota Project that is helping Twin Cities neighborhoods and communities grow and harvest fresh fruit. There are three focus areas:
Fruit Gleaning: Fruits of the City matches "donated" trees with groups of trained volunteers who the fruit and deliver it to local food shelves. In 2009, we picked over 15,000 pounds of fruit from over 40 trees. This season we harvested over 31,000 lbs from over 100 homes and 4 orchards providing over 5,000 family servings!
Community Orchards: We help plant new orchards at schools, churches, community gardens and other neighborhood spaces.
Fruit Tree Education: Classes for community members on how to properly plant, train, and care for various species of fruit trees and fruiting shrubs.
Heartland Food Network
The Heartland Food Network is a program of The Minnesota Project whose mission is to increase the amount of sustainably produced local foods served in Minnesotan restaurants, colleges, and other food service locations every year. HFN supports family farmers' ability to find stable, profitable markets for their goods by connecting them with chefs and other food service buyers.
We provide a toolbox of resources to help food service establishments break down barriers to buying local food. HFN connects farmers, chefs and local distributors; provides information about regulations and laws related to local foods; and connects chefs that use local foods to facilitate peer-to-peer knowledge sharing.