While farmers continue to struggle to plant their crops in these wet, cool spring conditions a group of staff from some of the major crop organizations tackled bigger picture issues in Cary, N.C. this week at a meeting of CROP.
Research and communications staff from corn, soy, sorghum, wheat, and cotton organizations met at Cotton Incorporated to discuss tools for farmer outreach and engagement on important production issues.
CROP represents broad U.S. acre commodities of corn, cotton, sorghum, soybeans and wheat and works to find synergies in research among row crop agriculture and represent farmers better, with one voice on key issues.
“We have lots of great information resulting from research programs funded by our various organizations, but finding the best way to get that information into the hands of those who need it most, whether farmers, advisors, customers, or consumers, is always a challenge, ”said Robyn Allscheid, National Corn Growers Association’s director of research and productivity. “Meetings like this give us the opportunity to share what is working well for each of our individual organizations, brainstorm about how to improve our programs, and identify areas where we can work together on a common goal.”
The group heard from representatives of Field to Market, Take Action, and the Plant Management Network about their platforms and discussed how various tools, from websites, to print magazines, to social media, play a role in getting production guidance and decision-making tools out to farmers and other key stakeholders.
“Research programs are stronger through our shared experiences and perspectives,” Allscheid said. “Our collective efforts have benefited a broad representation of agriculture. Some examples include grower outreach and tools on weed resistance management, guidance for public sector breeders to manage breeding stock for low-level presence, educational materials on the role soil health plays in agricultural production and coordinated approaches to pollinator protection.”
CommonGround is a group of farmers connecting with consumers through conversations about science and research and personal stories about food and misinformation surrounding farming. Supported by the NCGA and state corn organizations.
The Soil Health Partnership (SHP) is a farmer-led initiative that fosters transformation in agriculture through improved soil health. Administered by NCGA the partnership has more than 220 working farms enrolled in 16 states. SHP’s mission is to utilize science and data to partner with farmers who are adopting conservation agricultural practices that improve the economic and environmental sustainability of the farm.
The Corn Utilization and Technology Conference (CUTC) is a biennial event happening this June. Learn more.