Session
Title: Precision Conservation
Date: Tue Jul 23, 2019
Time: 1:00 PM - 3:00 PM
Moderator: Brian Arnall
Using Insights and Data to Drive Customized Conservation Solutions on Every Acre

In 2018, Land O’Lakes SUSTAIN launched the Truterra Insights Engine, a first-of-its-kind conservation tool that allows farmers, ag retailers and food companies to create customized solutions and measure sustainability progress and trends on every acre. Today, the Land O’Lakes SUSTAIN and the Truterra Insights Engine is helping farmers and ag retailers around the country identify conservation opportunities, implement solutions and measure year-over-year improvement—all while balancing the envrionemtnal impact with the economics of running a farm and business. Join Jason Weller, Senior Director of Land O’Lakes SUSTAIN, former Chief of USDA’s Natural Resources Conservation Service, the nation’s largest working lands conservation organization and creator of the Truterra Insights Engine, for a live demonstration of the tool’s capabilities including farmer-facing profit insights, field by field conservation activity and aggregaed insights available to food company partners looking to track sustainability progress in their own supply chains.

Jason Weller (speaker)
Senior Director of Sustainability
Land O' Lakes
Jason Weller joined Land O’Lakes, Inc., in 2017 as senior director of sustainability where he leads the team providing natural resource sustainability and agricultural production solutions for the cooperative’s members and owners. Jason previously served as Chief of USDA’s Natural Resources Conservation Service, the nation’s largest working lands conservation organization, where he led a staff of 10,500 employees across the country that works one-on-one with farmers and ranchers to deliver assistance to protect and improve the quality of their operations’ natural resources. Prior to serving as Chief, Jason held various agriculture and natural resource conservation leadership positions, including on the U.S. House Appropriations Subcommittee on Agriculture where he provided oversight and crafted legislation to fund USDA programs and activities; on the U.S. House Budget Committee where he helped construct the annual congressional budget for agriculture, environment and energy programs; and in the White House Office of Management and Budget where he assisted with the development and implementation of the president’s budget for USDA conservation programs. Jason earned a bachelor’s degree from Carleton College in Northfield, Minnesota, and a master of public policy degree from the University of Michigan.
Length (approx): 40 min
 
Talking to Farmers About Conservation

Most farmers do not know how much soil and crop nutrients leave their fields each year; if they did they would likely make changes in their management systems to reduce these losses.  Increasing demands society requires from agricultural systems include reducing the impact farmers have on the environment.  Farmers depend on and trust their local ag retail agronomist for advice on how to improve their operation, yet few crop advisors engage in discussions with growers about conservation.  The reasons crop advisors avoid this topic are complex, but one challenge that emerged is that the discussion may be sensitive and somewhat threatening to both parties.  We have worked with the American Society of Agronomy and the Certified Crop Advisor organization to develop a workshop on how to have a better discussion with farmers about conservation topics.  I will introduce the workshop and strategies for using this conservation conversation as an opportunity to better understand your customer’s long-term conservation and legacy goals.  A shortened practice version of the workshop exercises will be offered on Wednesday morning July 24th.

Todd Peterson (speaker)
Agribusiness Specialist
The Nature Conservancy
Urbandale, IA 50322
US
Todd works with ag retail agronomists to encourage them to promote practices that build soil health and reduce nutrient losses. The Nature Conservancy is the worlds largest conservation organization with more than 4000 employees worldwide. Todd earned degrees in Biology from St. Olaf College and his M.S., and Ph.D. in Agronomy from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln. He joined the faculty at Nebraska in 1990 and worked on some of the early applications of precision agriculture tools including yield mapping, remote sensing, spatial characterization of soils and VR fertilizer applications. He led the development of precision farming applications for Pioneer Hi-Bred (later DuPont Pioneer) and Land O’ Lakes. Todd lives with his wife and tandem stoker, Cindy in Urbandale IA.
Length (approx): 20 min
 
Leveraging Sustainability Insights to Maximize Agronomic Advice

Leveraging Sustainability Insights to Maximize Agronomic Advice: An Opportunity for Trusted Farmer Advisers & Preferred Technology Providers

Farmers have greater choice than ever when it comes to analyzing the performance of their management practices—and with customers increasingly asking questions about how their food is produced, it’s vital that farmers and their partners throughout the supply chain are able to incorporate sustainability insights into the data they are already collecting.  Field to Market: The Alliance for Sustainable Agriculture brings together a diverse group of more than 140 members representing all facets of the U.S. agricultural value chain—grower organizations; agribusinesses; food, beverage, restaurant and retail companies; conservation groups; universities and public sector partners—to define, measure, and advance sustainability metrics of food, fiber and fuel production. Field to Market’s Fieldprint® Platform is a pioneering assessment framework that empowers brands, retailers, suppliers and farmers at every stage in their sustainability journey, to measure the environmental impacts of commodity crop production and identify opportunities for continuous improvement. Join us to learn how Trusted Farm Advisors and Preferred Technology Partners can use the Fieldprint Platform to leverage sustainability insights alongside agronomic analysis to help farmers unleash opportunities for sustainability improvements that deliver operational efficiencies, demonstrate continuous improvement to the supply chain, and build consumer trust in food and agriculture.  This session will highlight Field to Market’s Qualified Data Management Partner program and how industry leading agribusiness are enhancing their agronomic offerings by using the Fieldprint® Application Programming Interface (API) to integrate Field to Market’s industry-accepted sustainability metrics within existing farm management systems and precision agriculture tools, giving farmers even greater choice when it comes to telling their sustainability story.

Paul Hishmeh (speaker)
Data & Technology Director
Field to Market
Washington, DC, NA
US
Paul leads the strategic direction for the development of the Fieldprint Platform, including integration into other farm management tools and software to support the scaling of Field to Market’s program. He possesses more than 15 years of experience in IT project management, most recently overseeing millions of dollars in federal government contracts for several agencies. Prior to joining Field to Market, Paul served as Vice President of IT and Financial Programs at Macfadden & Associates where he led and managed a group focused on delivering technology and financial services in the federal government space. Paul holds a B.S. in Agricultural Engineering from the University of Maryland.
Length (approx): 20 min
 
FieldWatch: Communication Through Mapping

Learn how a small non-profit is helping retailers and coops leverage mapping technology with spray decisions.  Field Watch's mission is to develop and provide easy-to-use, reliable, accurate and secure online mapping tools intended to enhance communications that promote awareness and stewardship activities between producers of specialty crops, beekeepers and pesticide applicators.
 

Bob Walters (speaker)
Director of Business Development
FieldWatch
West Lafayette, IN 47906
US
Bob is the Director of Business Development for FieldWatch. He joined FieldWatch as the first employee in 2014 when FieldWatch was formed and moved out of Purdue University. FieldWatch operates and manages the DriftWatch Specialty Crop Site, BeeCheck Apiary, CropCheck Row Crop, and FieldCheck Registries. DriftWatch was started at Purdue in 2008 by the Agriculture and Biological Engineering Departments. DriftWatch was developed as a communications tool to help connect pesticide applicators with specialty crop growers and beekeepers. BeeCheck was developed and released in 2015 to help beekeepers identify their locations with contact information for applicators. Bob has helped drive new growth in the current 21 FieldWatch states and the province of Saskatchewan. He is responsible to increase awareness and adoption in all the member states, help onboard new states, and encourage use and access by pesticide applicators, beekeepers, and specialty crop growers. FieldWatch now has 25,000 users and 32,000 approved sites, which is 500% growth from 2015. Bob also works directly with the software team to develop new features and improve the overall efficiency and effectiveness of the registries. Bob has worked to develop relationships and connections with software companies so the FieldWatch data may be exported to precision ag systems for use by applicators. Expect FieldWatch to continue its rapid growth and expansion as a voluntary mapping system to facilitate stewardship between interested parties.
Length (approx): 20 min
 
Rice Stewardship – Precision Agriculture in Action

USA Rice and Ducks Unlimited formed the Rice Stewardship Partnership in 2013 to conserve three of our Nation’s critical natural resources; working ricelands, water, and wildlife habitat.  A three-pronged strategic approach includes on-the-ground conservation, policy, and communications efforts.  Regarding on-farm work, many precision agriculture tools and techniques are applied.  From advanced irrigation and nutrient management, to radar satellite monitoring of winter waterfowl habitat, we will present scale, impact, and lessons learned with precision techniques in this landscape conservation work.

Scott Manley (speaker)
Director of Conservation Programs
Ducks Unlimited
Jackson, MS
US
Scott Manley is the Director of Conservation Programs for Ducks Unlimited (DU) in the Southern Regional Office, located in Jackson, MS. Scott joined Ducks Unlimited in 1998 and since then has developed many conservation partnerships including collaborations with the energy and agriculture sectors. One proud example is DU’s partnership with ConocoPhillips Company, the largest wetland owner in the U.S. Coastal resiliency efforts are very active across their 640,000 acres located in southeast Louisiana, ground zero for coastal land loss and subsidence. Also, a collaboration among DU, USA Rice, and the USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service, brings together twenty additional supplychain sponsors to deliver Rice Stewardship, with the goal of conserving working ricelands, water, and wetland wildlife. Scott received his B.S. from Texas State University – San Marcos, and his M.S. and Ph.D. from Mississippi State University.
Length (approx): 20 min