Allison Organic Farm (W.I.U.)

In 1989, the Agriculture Department at Western Illinois University identified a historically pesticide-free, limited-fertilizer, 80-acre farm located near the WIU campus.

The university wanted the land so it would be well-positioned to conduct research related to Low Input Sustainable Agriculture which, at the time, was the USDA’s new research initiative.

Allison Organic Farm‘s 80-acre farm are located near Roseville, IL., about 18 miles from the WIU campus, was owned by Marion and Pauline Allison. The land, now called the Allison Organic Research & Demonstration Farm, is still owned by the Allison family, and WIU’s Organic Agriculture Research Program rents it annually.

Finding such pristine land in the area was highly unusual, says Andrew Clayton, research technician with the Organic Agriculture Research Program at WIU’s School of Agriculture.

An immediate goal is to develop and test the practical and economic impacts of alternative soil, and crop management strategies for pesticide-free farming systems, and the feasibility of organic crops for west central Illinois.