Soil Health Summit Kicks Off Third Year of Program to Quantify Benefits of Healthy Soil
INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. (Feb. 1, 2016) – The Soil Health Partnership held its third annual Soil Health Summit in Indianapolis Jan. 21-22, hosting more than 140 attendees. They included farmers, agriculture industry leaders, environmental groups and university representatives.
As the partnership embarks on its third year, the organization has high hopes for network expansion and ground-breaking soil data results that will contribute to progressive changes in farming. Indiana Corn Marketing Council – the state corn checkoff – is a participant in the Soil Health Partnership.
“Economics are key to changing practices on the farm – we’ve heard that again and again,” Nick Goeser, SHP director, told attendees. “Although early in our data collection process, we’re in this for the long haul. We continue to improve data collection and our analytics process. We are also working on how we will put that research in your hands. Our research means nothing if it isn’t published to be used by our farmers and beyond.”
Demonstration farmers in the program collect data with the help of field managers and their agronomists in practices like cover crops, nutrient management and conservation tillage. The organization hopes to increase the number of demonstration farms enrolled to 60 this year.
“These farmers are pioneers and innovators,” said Chris Novak, NCGA CEO, during the summit’s closing address. “They are taking risks to build data that prove soil health improvements mean economic benefits from better yields, and environmental risk mitigation. We thank them for their leadership.”
The partnership is a data-driven initiative of the National Corn Growers Association, with support from Monsanto and the Walton Family Foundation, as well as technical support from The Nature Conservancy and Environmental Defense Fund. Hear interviews and view photos at SoilHealthPartnership.org.
The Indiana Corn Marketing Council was established by the Indiana General Assembly to promote the interest of corn growers in the state and manage corn checkoff funds. The Council is composed of 17 voting producer directors and seven appointed industry, and government representatives. For more information, visit www.incorn.org.
This communication was funded with corn checkoff dollars.