Transforming Agriculture, Perennially

Crop Stewardship

Crop Stewardship is how we get perennial grain crops onto the landscape—brought to scale, processed, prepared, and consumed—and keep them that way.

This work drives the ongoing agronomic and cultural changes required for successful adoption and use of perennial grain, oilseed, and legume crops.

Why Crop Stewardship?

  • Crop Stewardship builds upon the foundational work of our breeding, ecology, genetics, and ecosphere studies programs, encouraging collaborations and sharing resources to develop sustainable, just supply chains, partnerships, and economies.
  • We work to ensure our crops are valued beyond their caloric output, for their ecosystem services—soil preservation, climate change mitigation, water quality enhancement—and their social and economic services—community building, stakeholder empowerment, and knowledge sharing.

The transformation to an agriculture and a food system based upon perennial grain crops is a complex and long-term endeavor requiring support for Kernza®; other perennial grains, oilseeds, and legumes; and agro-ecological research beyond that which market forces alone can provide at this critical juncture. The hope is that increased demand for Kernza® products translates into more growers and acreage dedicated to Kernza® perennial grain, resulting in more Kernza® in production and on shelves, which in turn encourages more research and development into Kernza® and other perennial grains.

Kernza® grain is the first perennial crop from The Land Institute’s work to be introduced into the agriculture and food markets, but our researchers are currently working on others, including perennial wheatperennial riceperennial sorghum, perennial legumes, and perennial oilseeds, with more to come.

Join us by supporting this work with a donation to The Land Institute.


Program Team

Tessa Peters
Director of Crop Stewardship

Sophia Skelly
Upper Midwest Hub Coordinator

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