The Soil Health Partnership, a project of the National Corn Growers Association, is scheduled to close the doors for good on May 28. John Mesko, the groups senior director, says 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.
“Despite our good work, the empirical on-farm research that SHP conducted is expensive,” Mesko says. “Add to that our high level of farmer-facing support, with field staff covering 16 states and a bona fide research and data analysis staff, and the current cost of SHP exceeds the existing levels of support.”
In carrying out the mission, Mesko says they developed the best-in-class farm research protocols, farmer engagement strategies, and an elite suite of communication channels to tell the story. They also released key findings that included 2019 and 2020 cover crop planting reports, two published research papers, held several important webinars, and a study on the economic impact of conservation practices on farms.