Innovation down on the farm

| Print |  Email
Articles - May 2012
Monday, April 23, 2012

By Linda Baker

 

0512_GamePlan_Stahlbush_01
Bill Chambers is president of Stahlbush Island Farms, a sustainable farming operation that averages double-digit annual growth.
// Photo by Alexandra Shyshkina
Bill Chambers, president of Stahlbush Island Farms, has a simple explanation for why he has adopted so many innovative technologies and practices in service of sustainable agriculture. “Work should be fun and interesting, and doing new things makes work fun and interesting,” says Chambers, 54, who grows and processes fruits, vegetables, grains and legumes on 5,000 acres in Corvallis. “That’s the source of our core value of innovation.”

In 1997, Stahlbush became one of the first farms in the country to be certified sustainable by the Food Alliance. Twelve years later, the family-owned company turned agricultural waste into energy with the first biogas plant of its kind in North America. And in 2010, Stahlbush released the first 100% biodegradable freezer bag.

Today Chambers and his wife, Karla, continue their legacy of environmental innovation. Aiming to achieve a “carbon-negative footprint,” their latest acquisitions include a high-speed disc for preparing the soil and a computer-controlled weeder. The new pieces of equipment, which will debut this spring and summer, don’t sound particularly sexy. Yet both reflect Chambers’ focus on cutting-edge, chemical-free mechanical and computer-based approaches to agriculture.

 



 

More Articles

Fueling Up for the Climb

July/August 2015
Friday, July 10, 2015
BY GREGG MORRIS

Rita Hansen aims to scale natural gas vehicle innovation.


Read more...

Balancing Act

July/August 2015
Friday, July 10, 2015
BY DAN COOK

The Affordable Care Act has triggered a rush on health care plan redesign, a process fraught with hidden costs and consequences.


Read more...

Ranking the airlines that fly PDX

The Latest
Friday, August 14, 2015
airlinesthumbBY JACOB PALMER | DIGITAL NEWS EDITOR

17 airlines make stops at Portland International Airport, but not all are created equal when it comes to customer service.


Read more...

Back to School

September 2015
Wednesday, August 19, 2015
BY CHRIS NOBLE

Oregon is home to an abundance of gritty warehouses reborn as trendy office spaces, as well as crafty hipsters turned entrepreneurs. Does the combination yield an equally bounteous office products sector? Not so much. Occupying the limited desk jockey space are Field Notes, a spinoff of Portland’s Draplin Design Company, and Schuttenworks, known for whittling Apple device stands. For a full complement of keyboard trays, docking stations and mouse pads, check out the GroveMade line, guaranteed to boost the cachet of even the lowliest cubicle drone. 


Read more...

Bendafornia: What’s driving the Northern California migration?

Contributed Blogs
Wednesday, August 05, 2015
bendiforniathumbBY KEN MAES

A huge migration from Northern California has contributed to average 16% growth per year since 1990.


Read more...

Department of Self-Promotion

Linda Baker
Tuesday, August 04, 2015

061715-awards1Oregon Business wins journalism awards.


Read more...

Reader Input: Energy Overload

June 2015
Wednesday, July 15, 2015

We asked readers to weigh in on the fossil fuel-green energy equation.


Read more...
Oregon Business magazinetitle-sponsored-links-02
SPONSORED LINKS