New extension agent sees a busy workload ahead

Farming is on the upswing in Rhode Island and no one could be happier or more enthused perhaps than Andrew Radin, the newly hired CELS agricultural extension agent in sustainable agriculture.

Radin comes from his most recent employment at the Nova Scotia Agriculture College where for the last four and a half years he worked with that province’s extensive solid waste composting system which collects all residential organic waste producing compost for municipal and agricultural use.

Composting is just one of many interests Radin brings to his new job which represents the bolstering of outreach programs conducted by CELS. Dean John Kirby announced the decision to add an agricultural extension agent to the CELS staff at a faculty meeting last spring, much to the applause of the RI farming community.

Radin, a native of New Jersey, has a horticulture degree from the University of Wisconsin and a master’s degree in entomology from the University of Maine.

At Maine, he did research on the Colorado potato beetle and its natural predator.

Leaving Maine, he decided to go into vegetable farming in upper New York State. He had a Community Supported Agriculture operation there, also sold wholesale to natural food markets and had a small retail stand too. “It was a hard scrabble existence,” he says now of that nine-year stint.