Minnesota Agricultural Water Quality Certification Program Joins Field to Market Sustainability Efforts
St. Paul, MN: The Minnesota Agricultural Water Quality Certification Program (MAWQCP) announced today that it has joined Field to Market: The Alliance for Sustainable Agriculture, a national organization working to meet the challenge of producing enough food, fiber, and fuel for a rapidly growing population while conserving natural resources.
“We feel the Ag Water Quality Certification Program and Field to Market are a great fit together as Minnesota looks to be a national leader in water quality and sustainability efforts,” said Minnesota Agriculture Commissioner Dave Frederickson. “As a member, we will be connected with the network of organizations and farmers participating in Field to Market, and will be a collaborator on cutting edge projects to improve the agricultural supply chain.”
The Minnesota Agricultural Water Quality Certification Program is a voluntary program for farmers and landowners to take the lead in implementing conservation practices that protect and improve the state’s water resources. The program now has over 580 producers across Minnesota helping improve water quality on over 370,000 acres. Together, the program keeps over 30 million pounds of sediment out of our rivers, while saving nearly 67 million pounds of soil and 17,900 pounds of phosphorous on farms, each year.
As a member in Field to Market, the MAWQCP will work together with grower organizations, academia, conservation groups, public sector partners, and leading companies at a national level to continue to improve water quality, water use efficiency, and land use efficiency while reducing soil erosion and greenhouse gas emissions.
“We are pleased to welcome MAWQCP to our membership and look forward to forging greater public-private partnerships in Minnesota to support farmers in improving water quality outcomes,” said Rod Snyder, president of Field to Market. “Working with MAWQCP and the Minnesota Department of Agriculture will be a great addition to state-level leadership within Field to Market.”
Through innovative tools and resources developed by Field to Market, farmers and organizations across the supply chain are able to better understand sustainability at the field, local, and national levels and continue to advance improvements on the landscape. It is the goal of Field to Market to engage 20 percent of U.S. crop production acres in its supply chain sustainability programs by 2020.
Field to Market: The Alliance for Sustainable Agriculture brings together a diverse group of grower organizations; agribusinesses; food, beverage, restaurant and retail companies; conservation groups; universities and public sector partners to focus on defining, measuring and advancing the sustainability of food, fiber and fuel production. Field to Market is comprised of more than 135 members representing all facets of the U.S. agricultural supply chain, with members employing more than 5 million people and representing combined revenues totaling over $1.5 trillion.
The Minnesota Agricultural Water Quality Certification Program is a voluntary opportunity for farmers and agricultural landowners to take the lead in implementing conservation practices that protect our water. Those who implement and maintain approved farm management practices will be certified and in turn obtain regulatory certainty for a period of ten years. After a successful pilot phase in 2014-2015, the program is now available to farmers and landowners statewide. To date, the program has certified over 580 farms totaling more than 370,000 acres. More information is available at MyLandMyLegacy.com.
Allen Sommerfeld, MDA Communications