Agriculture resources are a great tool to help connect farmers to the research. One resource that many farmers utilized was the the Soil Health Partnership. The Soil Health Partnership — which was a project of the National Corn Growers Association — has been around for the past seven years promoting the adoption of soil health practices for economic and environmental benefit. However, the SHP announced this week that they will be closing their door.
John Mesko the Senior Director for the Soil Health Partnership said on the blog, “SHP has accomplished its original mission of determining the economic and environmental impact of conservation practices and communicating the importance of soil health to farmers and the agriculture community. In carrying out this mission, we developed best-in-class on-farm research protocols, farmer engagement strategies, and an elite suite of communications channels to tell the story, including webinars, blog posts, social media, podcasts and more. We’ve also released several key findings, including 2019 and 2020 cover crop planting reports, two published research papers, several important webinars and a study on the economic impact of conservation practices on farms.”
However, Mesko explains that everything comes at an expense. With the studies, research, and field staff that it takes to conduct those projects, SHP simply does not have the funds to continue. Mesko announces that the Soil Health Partnership will close its doors on May 28,2021.
Although it is sad to see SHP close its doors, its mission will continue on. In addition to its staff members continuing their passion for soil health in other avenues, the data collected in the past seven years will live on.
Mesko explained, “The impact of SHP will also live on through our dataset, which will be shepherded by two current staff members in a partnership with the University of Minnesota GEMS Platform. Eventually, this invaluable data will be available to the community for further analysis and leveraged for even better tools for farmers.”