There’s no blanket approach to implementing sustainable practices on a farm says Mike Wilson, Certified Crop Adviser (CCA) and Specialty Products Coordinator, Wabash Valley FS.
He recently called into AgriTalk to discuss what he has learned in working with farmers in southeastern Illinois, Indiana and Kentucky.
One successful way to implement sustainability is to stay rooted in the 4R nutrient management approach.
“We’ve been using basic 4R practices for 20 years, and now we are trying to use the 4Rs not only on nitrogen, phosphorus and potassium as well as all of the essential nutrients,” Wilson says. “Using the approach of the right rate, right product, right time, and right placement not only ensures we get what we need where we need it when we need it. But it also keeps the farmer sustainable with a positive return on investment.”
Implementing the 4Rs is an illustration of how the correct production practices also benefit soil health, water quality and how farmers are helping to protect the environment, Wilson says.
He says sustainability applies to environmental and economic factors.
“We try to explain to farmers that they are part of the sustainability equation. It’s about ensuring a plentiful and safe food supply for our communities and the public, and it’s about those who are charged with producing the food fiber and fuel, to be sustained on that land, keep them on that land and keep them viable with good agronomic advice with a qualified certified crop adviser,” Wilson says.
You can learn more at the upcoming Sustainable Agronomy Conference in Omaha, Nebraska.
Hosted by the CCA program and the American Society of Agronomy on July 10 and 11, the core focus of the conference will be in-field and farm-gate implementation not abstract science, hype, or vague concepts
Learn how to further implement sustainable agronomy using sound science, proven field techniques, and cutting-edge technologies. The program will also include local cropping system considerations related to sustainable practices.
Registration includes 1.5 days of sessions, lunch & breaks, up to 11 CEUs, and direct access to the leading experts in the field of Sustainable Agronomy.
The Certified Crop Adviser (CCA) Program is established as the benchmark for agronomy professionals and is the largest, voluntary certification program in North American agriculture. It provides base-level standards for agronomic knowledge through a national and regional testing process, and raises those standards through annual continuing-education requirements. An agronomist who becomes a CCA has demonstrated commitment, education, expertise, and experience when advising farmers on making the best land management, agronomic, and economic decisions possible.