U.S. agricultural efforts discussed in White House meeting

Courtesy of Field to Market
At the sustainability organization Field to Market’s recent spring meeting in Washington, D.C., the National Corn Growers Association (NCGA) took part in discussions designed to educate White House staff about U.S. agricultural efforts to lower greenhouse-gas emissions.

Jim Burg, a fifth-generation corn grower from Wessington Springs, South Dakota, was part of a panel of farmers that discussed sustainable practices in production agriculture.

"Farmers have been investing in conservation for years," Burg said. "We have fenced creeks, maintained wildlife habitats, utilized biotechnology to help reduce herbicides and insecticides, employed precision tools to optimize production and worked with crop consultants to utilize our farm's data.”

Burg said that as a result of these efforts, the country has a cleaner environment, faster and more efficient ways to farm and more profitable operations.

“What is different today than in the past is that our customers and our customers' customers want to know how innovations in technology and conservation practices are advancing the sustainability of crop production," Burg said.

The panel acknowledged that U.S. growers need to demonstrate how they contribute to sustainability within the supply chain, a process that has its challenges.

"Farmers need help to document their contributions," Burg said. "There needs to be enough flexibility within assessments to address constraints due to extreme weather, variable field conditions and a variety of unpredictable events that could occur within a given growing season. Farmers are industry's best bet for advancing sustainable agriculture, and practical and realistic goals will be what will drive practice adoption."

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National Corn Growers Association

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