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Field to Market doles out 2022 Sustainability Leadership Awards

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Field to Market: The Alliance for Sustainable Agriculture honored the recipients of the 2022 Sustainability Leadership Awards on the eve of the 8th Annual Sustainable Agriculture Summit. Now in their sixth year, the awards — presented as the capstone of the alliance’s fall meeting — are given to farmers, organizations and individuals who have demonstrated outstanding leadership through their efforts to advance continuous improvement in the sustainability of U.S. commodity crop production.

The winners of Field to Market’s Sustainability Leadership Awards are selected by the alliance’s Education and Outreach Committee. Each recipient demonstrates leadership in the pursuit of continuous improvement, resulting in measurable results and significant impact on both agriculture and the environment.

By combining innovative regenerative practices with locally rooted strategies to scaling conservation on the farm, each of this year’s award recipients demonstrate the power of creative collaborations to advance the alliance’s collective efforts to shape a more resilient and sustainable food system.

The recipients of the 2022 Sustainability Leadership Awards are:

2022 Farmer of the Year: Kelly Garrett, sixth-generation farmer, Arion, Iowa

Recognized for outstanding conservation efforts on his farm and leadership in advancing sustainable agriculture, Garrett was honored as Field to Market’s 2022 Farmer of the Year. Owning and operating Garrett Land & Cattle in Arion, Iowa, Garrett farms approximately 7,000 acres of corn and soybeans, and raises about 500 head of cattle in his cow-calf herd, all with a strong conservation mindset and a desire to help others do the same. Garrett includes a long list of sustainable practices on his operation—from no-till and cover crops to drip irrigation and variable rate applications of fertilizer.

The Farmer of the Year Award celebrates Garrett’s commitment to continuous improvement, not just for himself but for the peers he helps along the way. Primarily through XtremeAg, a platform Kelly co-founded to connect with real farmers from all over the U.S. who are committed to making sustainability improvements, Garrett is often sharing with fellow farmers the benefits of the tools and practices he uses.

2022 Collaboration of the Year: Supporting Nebraska farmers to boost resiliency via Cover Cropping Project

Recognizing an outstanding collaboration and cross-sector partnership, the 2022 Collaboration of the Year Award honors ADM, PepsiCo, Practical Farmers of Iowa (PFI), Keurig Dr Pepper (KDP), and Farmers Business Network for their collective efforts to advance corn and soybean sustainability in Nebraska.

Enrolled in Field to Market’s Continuous Improvement Accelerator, this project has united cross-sector organizations and competitors to continuously improve productivity, profitability and environmental outcomes for farmers, through direct contribution of funds to provide technical assistance to growers and subsidize cover crop seed.

2022 Trusted Adviser of the Year: Beatriz Moreno-García, postdoctoral researcher, University of Arkansas

Recognized for her outstanding leadership in supporting farmers’ journeys of continuous improvement, Beatriz Moreno-García was honored as 2022 Trusted Adviser of the Year. Providing valuable counsel to Arkansas farmers, Moreno-García champions sustainable solutions to reduce the environmental impact of rice production, working with farmers to help them try sustainable practices and monitor their improvements.

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Image by RozenskiP, Shutterstock

When asked why she chose rice for her studies, her answer was clear: Rice is an important crop for global food consumption and has a lot of room for improvement in terms of environmental impact.

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