St Louis– The United Soybean Board is a proud funding partner and endorses a multi-organizational initiative to connect private sector capital investors with innovative climate-smart, soil-centric agricultural technologies. U.S. farmers are leaders when it comes to using leading-edge technologies and best management practices to improve soil health while also increasing economic and environmental sustainability.
U.S. Farmers & Ranchers in Action (USFRA) partnered with the World Business Council for Sustainable Development, The Mixing Bowl and Croatan Institute to release a report that analyzes the state of emerging soil health technology and the need for climate-smart technologies to be commercialized with partnership funding from private sector capital investors.
The report included an in-depth analysis of the $972 billion in annual capital that flows from asset owners through asset classes and financial intermediaries to participants in the U.S. agricultural value chain. The report revealed the primary funding sources include institutional investors, retail investors and U.S. government via federal/state payments and incentives.
Beyond investment, leveraging technology to accelerate and scale on-farm adoption of climate-smart agriculture encompasses several action steps that align with USB’s sustainability goals. This ranges from supporting the development of tools that collect on-farm data to exchanging best practice know-how and data related to soil health, yield, profitability, etc. The report outlines these action steps as a vital linchpin to unlock the full potential of our soils.
Climate-smart agriculture is a suite of practices that increases productivity and income, enhances resiliency and adaptive capacity and reduces GHG emissions. Overall, the USFRA report focuses on six established farming and ranching practices, spanning:
- No-till/reduced tillage with retained residues.
- Cover crops.
- Crop rotation.
- Compost application.
- Managed grazing.
- Integrated crop and livestock systems.
The soy checkoff’s sustainability goals intrinsically align with the six practices outlined in the USFRA report. From reducing land use impact by 10%, greenhouse gas emissions by 10% and soil erosion by 25%, while increasing energy use efficiency by 10%, U.S. soybean farmers can use sustainable farming practices to reduce their environmental footprint.