Farming for the Future in Central MN
The Stearns County Soil & Water Conservation District, The Nature Conservancy, Minnesota Agricultural Water Quality Certification Program (MN Dept. of Agriculture), and Environmental Initiative partnered to measure the environmental and financial impact of innovative programs and whole farm planning in the Sauk watershed of west central Minnesota. This project has two initiatives.
Initiative 1: Sauk River Watershed Project
The Nature Conservancy, Minnesota Agricultural Water Quality Certification Program, and Stearns County SWCD have partnered in the Sauk watershed to assist growers with planning and capital required to achieve an overall water quality outcome while simultaneously addressing soil health and climate change. The project will compare metrics from the Fieldprint® calculator before and after financial and technical assistance in the Sauk watershed and the smaller Backes Lake sub-watershed. The Headwaters Agricultural Sustainability Partnership is offering and guiding unique funding opportunities and outreach strategies in the Backes Lake watershed.
Initiative 2: Headwaters Agricultural Sustainability Partnership ROI Project
Partners in Central Minnesota are working to research and assess the on-farm financial and environmental impacts of implementing conversation practices. The Partnership seeks to prove during a 3–5-year period that on-farm conservation practices make farms more economically sustainable, while protecting the land and other natural resources. This project also employs farmer-to-farmer outreach and education efforts to share case study results and encourage more farmers to adopt conservation practices. Project partners include: The Stearns County Soil & Water Conservation District, The Nature Conservancy, Houston Engineering, AgCentric, Midwest Dairy, MN Milk, Compeer Financial, Syngenta, Integrated Crop Management Services, and Steve Peterson LLC.