The American Society of Agronomy (ASA) and the International Certified Crop Adviser (ICCA) program announced a new specialty certification in 4R Nutrient Management Planning (NMP).

Environmental and resource management concerns require farmers have access to advanced knowledge in improved water quality and environmental stewardship. The ICCA Program 4R Nutrient Management Planning (4R NMP) Specialty Certification meets this demand.

The 4R NMP Specialty Certification is currently available in six states – Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Michigan, Minnesota, Wisconsin – with plans to expand in the near future. Certified crop advisers (CCAs) are eligible to apply for this certification.

Nutrient management is an integrated process that considers the agronomic aspects of soil and crop nutrition as well as the social, economic, and environmental relationships with the management system. It centers on the goal of building a nutrient management plan that puts the right nutrient sources, at the right rate, in the right place, and at the right time---the 4Rs of nutrient management.

4R nutrient management also considers the integration of agronomic practices with economic analysis and environmental interaction. These elements are important for success in the local field and downstream communities.

Proficiency areas tested include nutrient management planning; nitrogen, phosphorus, and potassium; secondary macronutrients and micronutrients; and manure management.

The first exam is on August 7, 2015. Performance objectives and registration materials are available at https://www.certifiedcropadviser.org/exams.

The Certified Crop Adviser certification, established by ASA in 1992, recognizes the education, expertise and experience of over 13,000 CCAs. CCAs must meet eligibility requirements and pass rigorous exams. To maintain certification and keep current in the knowledge, CCAs engage in continuing education activities each year.

ICCA is the largest, most recognized agriculture certification program in North America. Its professional standards are widely respected by industry, academia, and government. For more information on ICCA, visit https://www.certifiedcropadviser.org/.