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Home > Protecting Our Lands & Waters > Clean Water Fund > On-Farm Projects > Nutrient Management Initiative

Nutrient Management Initiative Program in Minnesota

Tractor attached to a Fast rig in a corn fieldThe Minnesota Nutrient Management Initiative (NMI) was developed to assist farmers and crop advisers in evaluating alternative nutrient management practices on their own fields. Participating farmers work with a crop adviser to set up field trials on their own farms. After completing plot harvest and submitting the required forms, farmers and crop advisers are reimbursed for their time and will receive a summary and analysis of their results.


  • Participating farmers are compensated $1,000 and crop advisers are compensated $500 for each field trial.
    • Due to state contracting policies, individual participant payments will come in two payments (June & December).
    • Payment limitation is $5,000 (5 sites maximum per farmer, 10 sites maximum per adviser)
    • Crop adviser and farmer must enroll in NMI separately in order to receive full payment. Deadline for enrollment is April 15th.
  • Guidance Protocol for Minnesota Farmers and Crop Advisers (PDF: 559 KB/7 pages)

Results and information from these field trials will:

  1. Assist farmers and crop advisers in evaluating current nutrient management practices versus an alternative practice they would like to try on their farm.
  2. Provide an opportunity to compare different nutrient management practices and evaluate economic outcomes.
  3. Assist participants in evaluating practices which can help reduce nitrate-nitrogen losses from fields. 

Individual results will be kept strictly confidential. Statewide results will be summarized for outreach purposes only to highlight and promote existing farm practice advancements and BMP adoption in Minnesota. Example of a plot layout for the Nutrient Management Initiative program

Examples of field trials available in 2015


Forms and Additional Information


Signing up is Easy... Enrollment Deadline is April 15, 2015

Thank you to everyone that signed up, we are looking forward to a great year!  Sign up for the 2016 growing season opens September 1, 2015. Please contact Ryan Lemickson if you have questions.



Timeline for 2015 Program

Important Dates Requirement for Payment Payment Amount
April 15, 2015 Complete initial sign up to verify interest at the Nutrient Management Initiative registration page (closed on April 11, 2015) 

Basic contact info and trial information are filled out and tracked for payment and correspondence

The MDA sends out a W9 tax form to be completed and mailed back to the MDA. (This process is only required once to input participants information into the MDA payment system)

As soon as participants register (through April 30th) W9 tax form must be completed and returned to the MDA in order to develop the official contract 

Contract Part 1 will be developed by the MDA and sent out to each farmer and crop adviser participating (this is a simple two page form that requires your signature)

Please use the self-addressed and stamped envelope to return the signed contract as soon as possible and before beginning any field trial work
MDA representative will contact you and arrange a time to bring the contract directly to you to save time
April 15 - May 31, 2015 Once contracts are signed and returned, the MDA will send out a copy along with the Crop Management Information Form to participants with a reminder about due dates. 
- For GPS and map assistance contact an MDA representative
June 1 - 30, 2015 - Field trials are installed
- Location map of trial area is submitted (as soon as trial set up is complete)
- Crop Management Form must be submitted to the MDA (required for payment)
$500 farmer payment
$250 crop adviser payment 
August 2015 Obtain an aerial imagery of field with strip trial  (limited to approximately 11,000 acres) no cost to participants
September 1, 2015 The MDA will send out forms to participants or contact you directly with a reminder about due dates.

- Contract Part 2 for both farmers and crop advisers (for second payment and needs to be returned prior to harvesting trials)
- Aerial imagery summary
- Harvest Information Form (submit after harvest)
December 1, 2015 - Field trials are harvested
- Harvest Information Form is submitted
$500 farmer payment
$250 crop adviser payment
January - February 2016 Field specific summaries are sent out to all participants  

MDA Contact

Ryan Lemickson
15325 Babcock Avenue
Rosemount, MN 55068
(612) 209-9181

Spencer Herbert
422 Belgrade Ave, #110
North Mankato, MN 56002
(507) 327-0266

Aaron Janz
16 MN Ave West, Suite 101
Glenwood, MN 56334 
(320) 634-4038

Southeast Minnesota
(Goodhue, Wabasha, Olmsted, Winona,
Fillmore and Houston Counties)
Dawn Bernau
3555 9th Street NW
Rochester, MN 55901
(507) 206-2881