History of the Auksuciai Foundation

The Auksuciai Foundation for Agriculture and Forest Development was established in the United States in 1999 as a nonprofit 501 (c) (3) tax deductible organization for the purpose of helping small scale Lithuanian farmers. The plan was to combine the efforts of US and Lithuanian academics, government officials, and farmers by providing information on the newest technologies, research, farmer to farmer mentoring, student exchanges and educational programs. It is primarily managed and advised by American agriculturalist who work as volunteers.

The farming system Lithuanian inherited after independence from the Soviet Union in `1991 was antiquated and inefficient leaving farmers unable to compete in the modern world. Small farmers (a major economic sector in Lithuania) lack access to modern equipment, high quality seeds, modern farming practices and marketing programs. With the help of the Auksuciai Foundation, to foster the goal of modernization, a Lithuanian nonprofit, the Auksuciu Ukio ir Misku Centras (The “Farm Center”) was created in 2002. It is located near the town of Kursenai in the Siauliai region of northwestern Lithuania. This model farm now serves as a research, demonstration and educational center.

The genesis of the Foundation and the Center came from Mr. Vytautas Sliupas, a retired engineer, living in Burlingame, California. Shortly after Lithuania gained its independence in 1991, Mr. Sliupas was able to secure the return of his Grandparents’ farmland. To reconnect with his ancestral home, he decided to establish a project which would honor his father and at the same time help farmers locally.

His father, Dr. Jonas Sliupas, was a prominent leader in the Lithuanian nationalist movement which sought independence from Tsarist Russia at the turn the century. He had to flee to the US in 1884. Whilein the US he worked ceaselessly on a Lithuanian American campaign to gain political and economic support for Lithuanian Independence. This movement eventually cumulated in official US recognition of Lithuania in 1922. The elder Sliupas returned to the newly independent Lithuania shortly after World War I, where he came to be regarded as one of the founding fathers of the modern Lithuania Republic.

When the Soviet Union annexed Lithuania during World War II the Sliupas farm was confiscated and nationalized. It remained under control of the Soviet backed government for the next fifty years. Following collapse of the Soviet Union and the reestablishment of an independent Lithuania, the younger Sliupas was able to reclaim the family 54 hectare (134 acres) farm. This acreage has been expanded to 157 hectares (389 acres) and now serves as the site of the Auksuciai Farm and Forest Center, where employees of the Center conduct research on new crops, improvement of existing crops, improving farming practices, and many other related projects. Both organizations currently have an on-going relationship with the Lithuanian Ministry of Agriculture, the Lithuanian University of Agriculture, Siauliai University and with prominent individuals in Lithuania such as the first lady of Lithuania, Mrs. Alma Adamkus.

At this point, the Foundation is working to recruit additional funding and prospective participants. The project is designated under US tax law as a nonprofit 501 (c) (3) and all contributions are fully tax deductible. Our IRS ID# is 91-1944327. We welcome any and all contributions, comments and inquires. If you would like further information concerning the Foundation or the Farm, please write to:

Mr. Vytautas Sliupas
2907 Frontera Way
Burlingame, Ca 94010 USA