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

On-Farm Projects

On-Farm Projects

On-Farm projects provide an opportunity to evaluate agricultural practices under conditions that are typical in an area. Projects are designed to monitor trends over time, demonstrate and evaluate management practices and provide farmers an opportunity to see how a practice works in their "backyard". Each project has a strong outreach component and is designed to give farmers relevant and practical information that will help farm profitability and environmental performance.

Current Clean Water Fund projects:

  • Red River Valley Drainage Water Management Project
    This project demonstrates water quality and quantity benefits of Drainage Water Management (DWM) and other practices to store water on the land.  DWM is a newer practice in the Red River Valley and the demonstration will inform and promote the use of the systems in the region.
  • Root River Field to Stream Partnership
    Project partners are working to better understand how agricultural practices affect water quality in southeastern Minnesota. This project includes intensive water quality monitoring at the edge of agricultural fields and within streams. 
  • Clay County Drainage Site
    The Clay County site is designed to evaluate the environmental impact of both surface and subsurface drainage from agricultural fields in the Red River Valley, located in northern Minnesota.
  • Minnesota Agricultural Water Quality Certification Program (MAWQCP)
    This is a voluntary program designed to accelerate adoption of on farm conservation practices that protect Minnesota's lakes and rivers.
  • Discovery Farms Minnesota
    Discovery Farms Minnesota is a farmer-led effort to gather field-scale water quality information from different types of farming systems across the state. Discovery Farms engages the farm community in learning about and evaluating the water quality benefits of a wide range of agricultural practices.
  • Conservation Targeting Initiative
    "Precision conservation" means targeting conservation practices to places on the landscape where they will be most effective. It's about getting the right practices in the right place, at the right scale. The Minnesota Department of Agriculture is providing technical assistance in the form of tool development, workshops, and pilot projects with local governments.
  • Nutrient Management Initiative (NMI)
    The Nutrient Management Initiative is designed to help farmers and crop consultants evaluate management decisions using the farmer's actual field conditions. On-farm trials allow farmers to compare different practices and evaluate their outcomes.
  • Technical Assistance
    Technical assistance helps ensure that current and accurate scientific information is made available and used to address local water quality concerns in agricultural areas of Minnesota. The MDA works with many partners including Universities, private industry, non-profits, Soil and Water Conservation Districts, counties, farmers and other state agencies. 

Completed Clean Water Fund Projects


 MDA Contacts

Margaret Wagner
Supervisor, Clean Water Technical Assistance Unit
Margaret.Wagner@state.mn.us ~ 651-201-6488

Looking for additional water data and information? Check out the Key Water Information Catalogue.