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Sustainable, Climate-Proof Agriculture

This program will provide food production, integrated with alternative energy, anywhere in the world.

Photo of Larry Schaefer
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Written by

Lead Applicant Organization Name

Schaefer Global Management LLC

Lead Applicant Organization Type

  • Small company (under 50 employees)

Website of Legally Registered Entity

How long have you / your team been working on this Vision?

  • 3-10 years

Lead Applicant: In what city or town are you located?


Lead Applicant: In what country are you located?

United States of America

Your Selected Place: what’s the name of the Place you’re developing a Vision for?

Fauquier County, Virginia

What country is your selected Place located in?

United States of America

Describe your relationship to the place you’ve selected.

We have partnered with a farmer who is offering at least two years of rent free use of the land to get the business established.  The total acreage of the land is 300 acres.  The whole farm is in an opportunity zone.  Using this property provides for allows for a large area for expansion.

Describe the People and Place: Provide information that would be helpful for an outsider who has never been there and may have no context about this Place to better understand the area.

This area in Virginia is rural with several small farmers producing a mix of corn, soybeans, beef and dairy and some smaller productions of speciality crops.  The demographics of the farmers show that most are at the age of retirement without a following generation to continue production.  This area is approximately 30 miles east of the Shenandoah Mountains.

What is the estimated population (current 2020) in your Place?


Challenges: Describe the current (2020) and the future (2050) challenges that your food system faces.

This area is typical of other rural farming areas where the farmers are aging and the next generation has not taken an interest in farming or has accepted the reality of earning more money in another industry close or within an urban area.  With the loss of smaller producers of food nationwide the sources of food become more centralized which causes serious vulnerabilities in food security and safety, which has been demonstrated by recent recalls on several types of food, nationwide.  These recalls also demonstrated the value of controlled environment agriculture, as there was also a disclaimer that was part of the recalls that any produce that had been produced in an indoor facility was not included.  

Address the Challenges: Describe how your Vision will address the challenges described in the previous question.

By implementing aquaponic systems in this rural area will be providing jobs, stimulating new business development and will be starting production systems that begin to address access to affordable, healthy food for everyone within a four hour transportation delivery area, which includes some major metropolitan areas like, Washington, Richmond and all of northern Virginia.

High Level Vision: With these challenges addressed, now provide a high level description of how the Place and the lives of its People will be different than they are now.

Through this program there will be a significant economic stimulus to the immediate area.    With the expanded program replicated in multiple locations things like food deserts and malnutrition can be addressed.

Full Vision: How do you describe your Vision for a regenerative and nourishing food future for your Place and People for 2050?

By implementing these systems globally in rural, urban and peri-urban areas all of the SDG's, either directly or indirectly, will be addressed.  Villages, towns, cities, states and whole countries will experience an economic recovery, stability, reduced conflict and a healthier and more productive population.

How did you hear about the Food System Vision Prize?

  • Email


Join the conversation:

Photo of Alana Libow

Hi Larry Schaefer - Welcome to the Food System Vision Prize!

Be sure to check out our final stages checklist/guide -- Zoom in particularly to "vision" vs "solution" and "futurecasting":

We look forward to seeing your final updates by 5pm EST tomorrow!

Photo of Bill Brandon

Larry - You need to beef up this presentation significantly to be competitive for this prize. I am in total agreement with what you have presented here. It is an element of our presentation which covers more area but contains your designated area. Please see our presentation 'With a little help from our friends'. Part of this prize is to encourage collaboration and I would like to invite you to collaborate with our submission. I am listing you as inspiring our contribution. I would appriciate it if you do the same for us. I live in Arlington and would like to have further contact with you about what you are doing. My email is. Web page is Yoou may call if you wish. 703 489 0995. Thanks and I look forward to learning more about your activities.

Photo of Itika Gupta

Hey Bill Brandon it is wonderful to see you reach out so actively to this submission for a collaboration. You're truly owning the spirit of the Food System Vision Prize of growth through collaboration and connections.
Considering most people are new to each other on the Prize Platform, it would be wonderful to start a connection with encouraging words. Just to make sure no one misunderstands you well-meaning intentions to engage and work together.

Can't wait to see how you and Larry Schaefer collaborate on your ideas for the Prize.
Feel free to reach out to me incase there is anything our OpenIDEO team can help you guys with to build this connect.

Looking forward to seeing your final submissions.

Photo of Bill Brandon

Larry and I met yesterday and found we had a lot in common beyond just this prize. Larry has officially joined our team for the Food System Vision Prize. Larry and I both have a lot of 'on the ground' experience and share the view that academics overstate their expertise and are not particularly open to collaboration. I have had a couple of run-ins with Cornell University about not sharing any data which I can develop at some expense but would be nice if it were available at more of an open source.

I have sent Sofia a comment that I would be Interested in connecting with anyone who is more focused on health, diet and food than we are. Thank you for your comment.

Photo of Larry Schaefer

This is going to be a great collaboration to prove the multiple technologies ability to produce cost competitive, healthy, better-than-organic, locally grown food and the ability to provide jobs and show a reasonable profit for replication, everywhere.

Photo of Debbie Ajei-Godson

Good initiative Larry