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When Prohibition was enacted, it wasn’t just alcohol production that stopped. Many grains stopped being produced due to the sudden drop in demand. When farmers shifted their attention to other crops, their knowledge and use of those old crops slowly faded away.

Seed Spark is working to bring back some of those “lost” grains that the region was famous for. We are working with United States Department of Agriculture Research Service, local universities and farmers to resurrect these treasures. In doing so, we will help kick start economic development in the Delaware Valley.  Heritage grains can be very important to the local Pennsylvania economy.  If we can help establish these grains with farmers and producers, we can create an industry that is unique to Pennsylvania helping to provide an premier identity for the region.

Rosen Rye Project

In 2016, Delaware Valley Fields Foundation planted the first seeds in the Rosen Rye project. Seeds were planted in Bucks County, Lehigh County, and State College Pennsylvania.

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Those seeds grew into a starter crop that was harvest and replanted at Penn State University’s Agricultural.  That starter crop produced another around of starter seeds. In 2017, those seeds were re-replanted into nearly an acre of Rosen Rye.

Seed Spark Rosen Rye – The rye is getting settled in for the winter. December 2017

Here is a close up of the rye in the ground on one of Penn State’s agricultural extension’s research plots.

Mr. Greg Roth showing the rye plants after the heavy snows melted in early March 2018. Rye is a very hearty winter crop and will be ready to grow when the ground warms in the coming months.