An Environmental Initiative Program

Farmer Leadership

Field Stewards farmers maintain a high level of environmental protection on their farms, and food companies reward them for conservation leadership. Through this relationship, food companies invest in clean water, local economies and the voluntary adoption of environmental practices on farms.

Certified Field Stewards farmers receive payments from food companies for reaching and maintaining a high level of environmental protection on their farms. In return, companies get recognition and credit for promoting clean water and conservation leadership, without having to reach down a complicated and untraceable supply chain.


WHAT FARMERS SAY


HOW IT WORKS

Field Stewards partners with the Minnesota Agricultural Water Quality Certification Program, a voluntary award-winning effort run by the Minnesota Department of Agriculture that helps farmers meet a rigorous and transparent standard for water quality protection on your farm. Learn more about certification »


PRACTICES

COVER CROPS

Cover crops—like rye grass, tillage radishes or small grains are planted to help manage soil erosion and soil runoff from fields. Cover crops can be planted in conjunction with traditional crops like corn and soybeans. They hold the soil in place and take up excess fertilizer, keeping it out of our streams and rivers.

CONSERVATION BUFFERS

Conservation buffers, or vegetative buffers, are strips of land maintained in permanent vegetation. Plants in the buffer strip help to filter out pesticides, fertilizer and sediment that runoff from farm fields.

CONSERVATION TILLAGE

Conservation tillage is the practice of leaving the previous year’s crop residue—like corn stalks—on fields before and after planting the next crop to reduce soil erosion and runoff.


PARTICIPATE IN FIELD STEWARDS

To get your company started or for more information on Field Stewards, contact Greg Bohrer at 612-334-3388 ext. 8112.

Interested farmers should contact Charlene Brooks with Conservation Marketplace Midwest.