CRAWFORDSVILLE, Ind. — Ceres Solutions has announced that a new resource is available to help local farmers expand their on-farm stewardship initiatives. This new full-time position is the result of a collaboration between Ceres, USDA’s Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS), Pheasants Forever and Quail Forever, the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation (NFWF), and Truterra, LLC, the sustainability solutions business of Land O’Lakes Inc., and sustainability champions and food leaders in the area, Tate & Lyle and PepsiCo.
Precision Agriculture Conservation Specialist, Sina Parks, will help growers identify and utilize a suite of Farm Bill conservation programs to increase environmental stewardship on their farms while helping to improve bottom line profits. “I am excited to meet new growers and help them expand their stewardship opportunities, by utilizing a new set of resources combined with my Farm Bill conservation program experience,” Parks says.
Parks will also work with Ceres Solutions to engage local producers in new opportunities to realize economic benefit for advancing stewardship on their fields. This unique and innovative position will be hosted by Pheasants Forever and embedded alongside Ceres Solutions team members in west central and southwest Indiana. This arrangement will provide direct access for Ceres Solutions customers and staff, with links to Pheasants Forever’s Conservation Operations Team and extended conservation partner network.
“Farmers are always driving to find right tactics and expertise to incorporate the conservation practices that help them remain competitive. Our participation is part of our larger commitment to sustainability solutions,” says Jeff Nagel, Director of Agronomy Programs at Ceres Solutions.
The Precision Agriculture Conservation Specialist will use the Truterra™ Insights Engine, Truterra’s sustainability tool, to help growers measure current practices field by field and then identify and track opportunities for improvement over time. The Truterra Insights Engine is a live and interactive tool that allows growers to “plug and play” different combinations of stewardship practices to identify the system that maximizes ROI and minimizes environmental impact for each field.
“We are pleased to provide grant funding to support the placement of a full-time dedicated Precision Agriculture Conservation Specialist in the west central and southwest portions of Indiana,” says Todd Hogrefe, Central Regional Office Director for NFWF. “This position will help deliver progressive and innovative sustainability programming that will drive important conservation and economic outcomes for local farmers.”
“Ceres Solutions put our stake in the ground for conservation best practices decades ago. We’re passionate about it,” says Betsy Bower, veteran agronomist for Ceres Solutions. “We encourage all customers to take advantage of this new resource and the benefit it can offer your operation.”
About Ceres Solutions:
Ceres Solutions is a 100% farmer owned cooperative. We are a leading supplier of agronomy inputs, seed, technology, information, power fuels, lubes, propane, animal nutrition and more. With outlets in 37 Indiana and Michigan counties, we are proud to invest in our local communities and our youth through 4-H, FFA, academic scholarships and more. To learn more about Ceres Solutions visit our website at ww.ceres.coop.
About Truterra, LLC
Truterra is a leading stewardship solutions provider, advancing and connecting sustainability efforts throughout the food system with scale – from farmers to ag retailers to collaborators such as food companies. Truterra positions farmers for success by providing them tools and resources to establish a stewardship baseline and track progress on every field they farm. The Truterra™ network brings together the best in agricultural technology and on-farm business management to drive sustainability across the food system, feeding people, safeguarding the planet and supporting farmer livelihoods. Truterra was launched in 2016 by Land O’Lakes, Inc., a member-owned cooperative that spans the spectrum from agricultural production to consumer foods.
About Pheasants Forever and Quail Forever
Pheasants Forever, including its quail conservation division, Quail Forever, is the nation’s largest nonprofit organization dedicated to upland habitat conservation. Pheasants Forever and Quail Forever have more than 125,000 members and 760 local chapters across the United States and Canada. Since creation in 1982, Pheasants Forever has spent over $900 million on 560,000 habitat projects benefiting 20 million acres nationwide. In fact, more than 200,000 of those acres are now permanently protected as public lands.
About the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation (NFWF)
The National Fish and Wildlife Foundation (NFWF) works with the public and private sectors to sustain, restore and enhance the nation’s fish, wildlife, plants and habitats for current and future generations. Chartered by Congress in 1984, NFWF has grown to become the nation’s largest private conservation grant-maker, funding more than 18,600 projects and generating a total conservation impact of $6.1 billion. Learn more at www.nfwf.org.
— Ceres Solutions
For more articles about conservation, click here.