Transforming Agriculture, Perennially


Zachary Kariya


Zachary comes from San Luis Obispo, along the central coast of California. He is entering his fourth and final year at California Polytechnic University of San Luis Obispo where he is studying Environmental Management and Protection with a sustainable agriculture minor. he is also working on a research team to study the effects of cover crops on nitrous oxide emissions, a potent greenhouse gas, in lemon orchards after fertilization.


What drew you to work at TLI?
In my freshman environmental science class, my professor showed a video of the natural systems agriculture work of The Land Institute and I became immediately inspired by their approach to solve the issues that agriculture faces perennially. To me, the concept of using a natural ecosystem as a model for an agriculture system is simple yet genius. The Land Institute’s work seems to be the perfect intersection of my love for natural systems ecology and agriculture. Additionally, in my opinion, The Land Institute has the foundation and charisma to scale up this concept to revolutionize conventional agriculture.

What TLI perennial crop do you look forward to eating most, and how would you prepare it?
I would try my hand at making a Kernza biscuit and top it with some sausage and mushroom gravy.

What else are you passionate about (outside of work)?
Outside of work I enjoy playing the guitar, gardening, climbing, backpacking, and botanizing.

If you were to write a book, what would it be about?
A guidebook on how to eat as economically efficient as possible

What’s your motto / favorite quote?
“Take it to the limit one more time” – Eagles

What were you like at age 10?
I wore exclusively basketball shorts and tee shirts (even on rainy days) and had a horrible taste in music.

Share On: Share on Facebook Share on Twitter Select other ways to share