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4R Nutrient Stewardship Certification program launched

More than 250 agricultural retailers and stakeholders from the Ohio, Indiana and Michigan agriculture communities attended the launch of the 4R Nutrient Stewardship Certification program last week in Perrysburg. The Ohio AgriBusiness Association is administering the program on behalf of the Nutrient Stewardship Council. The voluntary program is geared toward the long-term improvement of Lake Erie’s water quality by applying the 4R principles. The 4R approach – using the Right Nutrient Source at the Right Rate and Right Time in…

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Research reveals true value of cover crops to farmers, environment

UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. — Planting cover crops in rotation between cash crops — widely agreed to be ecologically beneficial — is even more valuable than previously thought, according to a team of agronomists, entomologists, agroecologists, horticulturists and biogeochemists from Penn State’s College of Agricultural Sciences. “As society places increasing demands on agricultural land beyond food production to include ecosystem services, we needed a new way to evaluate ‘success’ in agriculture,” said Jason Kaye, professor of biogeochemistry. “This research presents a…

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Improve Water Quality by Using Cover Crops and Other Conservation Practices

Join us for a webcast on using cover crops and other conservation systems to improve water quality in agricultural landscapes. Cover crops are plants used to protect and improve the soil on farm fields, especially at times when cash crops such as corn, wheat and soybeans are not being grown. Cover crops can reduce nutrient losses to watersheds by scavenging nitrates that would otherwise be lost to leaching. In addition, cover crops reduce sediment and phosphorus losses to nearby waterways…

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Ag Community Launches Responsible Commitment to a Cleaner Lake Erie

As regulations are being considered, the agriculture community is launching a proactive, responsible commitment aimed at the long-term improvement of Lake Erie’s water quality. Harmful algal blooms in the Great Lake and other bodies of water in the area have been on the rise the past five years, leading to increased water treatment costs and negative impacts on fishing and tourism. Farmers have taken many actions to improve soil health and reduce fertilizer runoff, but nutrients leaving fields and entering…

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Surveys On Cover Crops & Soybean Production

The North Central Soybean Research Program (NCSRP) has recently funded an eight-state study to identify and prioritize future research needs on the use of cover crops in soybean production systems. Part of this project is to get a sense from soybean growers in Wisconsin, and from those that advise soybean growers in some capacity, if they are using cover crops before or after soybean. Our goal is to get input from all soybean growers and consultants, not just ones currently…

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NRCS Extends Cut-Off Date for Conservation Funds

EAST LANSING, Feb. 21, 2014 – The U.S. Department of Agriculture extended the cut-off date for Michigan farmers to submit applications for the first 2014 round of Environmental Quality Incentives Program funding to March 21. The program provides financial assistance to agricultural producers and non-industrial forestland owners for adopting a wide range of conservation activities. The March 21 cut-off date gives farmers an extra 30 days to submit applications to their local USDA Service Center. Conservation activities receiving financial assistance…

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