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SISC Metric Development Plan for 2011 Growing Season

Dana Gunders


Attention all stakeholders!  The Stewardship Index for Specialty Crops (SISC) is currently receiving feedback from the 2010 pilot testing process and will go through an intense revision process to prepare the first cluster of metrics for public comment by April 30, 2011.  We need your active engagement and participation in webinars coming up in late January and early February, and throughout the metric revisions process that will occur from February to April.  Webinar dates and registration can be found on the metric workgroup pages at

2011 Workplan for the Metric Development Process:

January/Early February:  Pilot feedback webinars

February 10-11:  Coordinating Council meeting

February to April:  Metric revision work by workgroups

April 15:  Deadline for metric revisions

Late April:  Metric review by Coordinating Council

May:  Public comment period

July: First version of working metrics released

Results and feedback from pilot testing SISC for the 2010 growing season are currently being processed, anonymized and analyzed. All metric workgroups with piloted metrics will be convened (with the exception of the on-farm pesticide metric which is being addressed by the Coordinating Council separately) in late January or early February via webinars. During these webinars, analyses of feedback on data collection and qualitative observations on the metric data will be presented. Metric data itself will not be presented at this time.  These webinars will launch the metric revision process, which will continue from February to mid-April.

Stakeholders can contribute their input via webinars, participation in small revision workgroups which will be launched during the webinars, or via comments on our new and improved website portal. 

On February 10 and 11, the Coordinating Council will hold a meeting to review pilot results and evaluate whether the data itself is necessary and appropriate to share with the metric workgroups. Those workgroups to which the Coordinating Council passes on metric data will hold webinars in the second half of February.

April 15 is the deadline for metric revisions. Workgroups will make recommendations to the Coordinating Council on whether the metrics are ready to be considered working metrics or require another season of pilot testing.  The Coordinating Council will hold a call in late April to discuss.  Those metrics which are accepted as working metrics will be posted online for a 30-day comment period.  At the end of this comment period, the Coordinating Council will review public comment and approve or revises the metrics as appropriate.

With this timeline, we are aiming to have an initial set of SISC Working Metrics available for public use by July 2011.  Work on metrics still in development or continuing in pilot phase will continue during this time.