The Soil Health Partnership is a new initiative undertaken by the National Corn Growers Association with support from partners in agriculture and conservation and leading scientific experts. In a nutshell, we want to help growers unlock the potential that’s right under their feet.
Ask anyone in agriculture and they’ll tell you: healthy soils sustain higher yields. Just as important, if less apparent, is the crucial role soil health can play in protecting water quality and other aspects of good environmental stewardship. However, while our industry has seen massive leaps in innovation in seed technology, equipment design and precision planting strategies, we haven’t seen a concentrated effort to understand and measure the beneficial effects of innovative soil management strategies. Until now.
Over the next five years, we plan to identify, test and measure management practices that improve soil health and benefit farmers’ operations. Right now, the connections between on-farm practices and soil health are not well understood. However, hundreds of farmers across the country are implementing innovative management practices that are resulting in economic and environmental benefits. We believe the results of our study will provide a platform for knowledge sharing from farmer to farmer as well as support management changes that benefit farmers’ bottom lines and the sustainability of the system. We want to become a catalyst for analyzing and more broadly implementing the practices that work best.
Our ultimate goals are to MEASURE AND COMMUNICATE THE ECONOMIC AND ENVIRONMENTAL BENEFITS of different soil management strategies and provide a set of regionally specific, data-driven recommendations that farmers can use to improve the productivity and sustainability of their farms. To that end, we plan to do the following:
Suzy Friedman, Environmental Defense Fund | Daren Harmel, Ph.D., USDA-ARS
Jerry Hatfield, Ph.D., USDA-ARS | Wayne Honeycutt, Ph.D., NRCS
Doug Karlen, Ph.D., USDA-ARS-MWA | Eileen Kladivko, Ph.D., Purdue University
Sean McMahon, The Nature Conservancy | Mike Plumer, Ph.D., Agricultural Consultant
Charles Rice, Ph.D., Kansas State University | Peter Scharf, Ph.D., University of Missouri
Harold Van Es, Ph.D., Cornell University
Environmental Defense Fund
Daren Harmel, Ph.D.,
Jerry Hatfield, Ph.D.,
Wayne Honeycutt, Ph.D., NRCS
Doug Karlen, Ph.D.,
Eileen Kladivko, Ph.D.,
The Nature Conservancy
Mike Plumer, Ph.D.,
Charles Rice, Ph.D.,
Kansas State University
Peter Scharf, Ph.D.,
University of Missouri
Harold Van Es, Ph.D.,
We expect to add
who are excited to participate
in our important work.
We expect to add additional Supporters
who are excited to participate in our important work.