At The Farm

Located in Pocantico Hills, NY, Stone Barns is a laboratory for learning and catalyzing a culture of informed, healthy eating.

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Teaching & Learning

By educating people about food and farming, we're encouraging the food citizens of tomorrow to make healthier life choices for themselves and the planet.

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About Us

We are working to develop a culture of eating based on what farms need to grow to build healthy soil and a resilient ecosystem.

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Waste Systems: BioEnergy and Compost

This two-part class will explore different techniques for waste system management. It will begin with Dr. Serpil Guran from Rutgers as she explains how farmers can divert food and crop wastes to help power their farms with bio-digesters. We will explore usable feedstocks for bio-digesters, learn from Rutgers EcoComplex, and study how farmers can participate in clean energy systems. The afternoon portion of this class will be dedicated to the Stone Barns Center compost systems with Grounds Manager Shane Hardy.  We will discuss how to utilize compost for fertility and soil health management, how to build and maintain a turned windrow compost pile, and explain how to manage and troubleshoot a variety of complications that might come up when starting a compost system. After visiting different waste management operations, we will then look into how to build a pile with a variety of ingredients and assess carbon and nitrogen content in each.


Shane Hardy is grasslands manager at Stone Barns Center. He grew up across the river in Nyack, N.Y., and has worked on farms in New York’s Finger Lakes region, Orange County and Rockland County. He is thrilled to be working here at home in the southern Hudson Valley and pursuing his passion for building soil, increasing resilience and biodiversity in agriculture and finding creative solutions to meeting our humans needs from the land as healthy partners in the natural system we live in.

At Stone Barns Center, Shane works with the organic materials that flow through the center—manure, leaves, food scraps and more—to create compost teeming with life to feed to the soil, while exploring other intermediate and complementary uses for these materials. He provides technical and mechanical support for the rest of the farm team and works on technological and biological innovations for resilient farming.

On the side: When not at work, Shane likes gardening, cooking, preserving and fermenting foods, hiking, hanging out with his loved ones, reading, watching movies and seeing theater in New York City.


Serpil Guran is the Director of Rutgers EcoComplex “Clean Energy Innovation Center”. She also manages the new RutgersX “EcoIgnite: Clean Energy Proof of Concept Center and Accelerator” program. Her responsibilities include management of the EcoComplex operations, programs, business incubator and facilities, as well as providing vision and leadership in establishing the EcoComplex as a center for the commercialization of environmental and clean energy technologies. She teaches online classes “Sustainability Decision tools”, and “Introduction to Bioenergy technologies”. She also teaches “Critical Thinking in the Case of Learning Food- Energy- Water- Nexus”. She has a courtesy teaching affiliation with Plant Biology Program.    

Dr. Guran is trained on thermochemical conversion (pyrolysis and gasification) of biomass and waste materials for production of fuels and chemicals and she specializes in research, development and assessment of sustainable biofuel and recycling technologies, and life cycle analysis of clean energy systems alternative fuel production systems. Currently, she is working on Food-Energy-Water Nexus and Waste synergy by promoting integration of organic waste into development of closed-loop bio-economy.