Joining Forces to Support Sustainable Agriculture in Saskatchewan

OTTAWA, June 27, 2017 /CNW/ - By 2050, the global population is expected to rise to 9.7 billion. This intensified need for food and other agri-products will put pressure on farmers to increase crop yields on less land, while protecting important resources like water and soil. Fortunately, steps are already being taken in Saskatchewan, Canada and around the world to strengthen sustainable agriculture.

Fertilizer Canada and the federal and provincial governments, through the  Growing Forward 2 (GF2) framework, have awarded contributions of $24,000 and $100,000 respectively to eight producer-led Agriculture-Applied Research Management (Agri-ARM) sites in the province. The sites will implement 4R Nutrient Stewardship (Right Source @ Right Rate, Right Time, Right Place®) demonstration projects in order to increase awareness and adoption of the program among local producers.

Project concepts were submitted to the GF2-funded ADOPT (Agriculture Demonstration of Practices and Technologies) program which supports local demonstration projects to provide Saskatchewan producers and ranchers the opportunity to evaluate new practices and technologies under local conditions.  Funding for GF2 is provided on a 60/40 basis through the federal and provincial governments.

"This investment by the federal and provincial government through the GF2 framework is a significant step forward in the journey toward further enhancing sustainable agriculture," said Garth Whyte, President and CEO of Fertilizer Canada. "We're pleased Saskatchewan has recognized 4R Nutrient Stewardship as a best practice approach to nutrient management as it pertains to soil protection, conservation and sustainability."

4R Nutrient Stewardship is a science-based system that tailors the use of fertilizer products –essential plant nutrients like nitrogen, phosphate, potash and sulphur – from farm field to farm field to create optimal soil nutrient conditions for growing specific crops. By applying the right source of fertilizer at the right rate, the right time and at the right place, the system is proven to improve and protect soil quality, increase crop yields and reduce unwanted nutrient losses to the environment.

Last year, Fertilizer Canada and the Saskatchewan Ministry of Agriculture signed a Memorandum of Cooperation to solidify both parties' shared commitment to protecting and conserving the province's soils, improving nutrient management and supporting sustainable agriculture. This MOC was a catalyst for creating opportunities to host 4R demonstration projects in the province.

"The agricultural community continues to be committed to both increased agricultural productivity and good environmental stewardship for the next generation of farmers," said Lyle Stewart, Saskatchewan's Minister of Agriculture.  "We applaud these producer groups for their commitment in advancing agricultural science, which will increase the long-term sustainability of the industry."

Agri-ARM's sites enable producers to enhance their knowledge and pilot innovative and sustainable Best Management Practices (BMPs) through 4R Nutrient Stewardship demonstration projects. Each of the eight sites will host three or four demonstration projects, including field tours and outreach to local producers, under three main theme categories: Demonstrating 4R Phosphorus Principles in Canola, Demonstrating 4R Nitrogen Principles in Canola, and Demonstrating 4R Nitrogen Principles in Wheat.

Implementing these 4R demonstration projects in Saskatchewan is another positive step toward Fertilizer Canada's goal of obtaining 20 million 4R acres – acres of farmland managed by 4R Nutrient Stewardship – by 2020.

Fertilizer Canada represents manufacturers, wholesale and retail distributors of nitrogen, phosphate, potash and sulphur fertilizers. The fertilizer industry plays an essential role in Canada's economy, contributing over $12 billion annually and 12,000 jobs. The association is committed to supporting the fertilizer industry with innovative research and programming while advocating sustainability, stewardship, safety and security through standards and Codes of Practice. Please visit fertilizercanada.ca.

 

SOURCE Fertilizer Canada

For further information: MEDIA CONTACT: Kelly McCarthy, Communications Assistant, 613-786-3035, kmccarthy@fertilizercanada.ca

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