Farmers making progress in water quality efforts

Ohio Farm Bureau is continuing to work proactively to ensure the state has both clean water and productive farming. Over the past 2½ years, OFBF has invested more than $2 million in its comprehensive Water Quality Action Plan. Farm Bureau staff and county volunteers have worked tirelessly to implement water quality programs in communities throughout Ohio with the help of dozens of partnering organizations.

OFBF’s leadership in improving the state’s water quality is being recognized not only in Ohio but nationally. Ohio Farm Bureau recently received American Farm Bureau’s prestigious New Horizon Award for its county water quality grants program.

Scientists, conservationists, farmers, reporters, university leaders, businesses, environmentalists and state and federal leaders have already visited the Blanchard River Demonstration Farms in the Western Lake Erie Basin. County Farm Bureaus have embraced the challenge of creating innovative programs that improve water quality in their communities and educate consumers about the importance of agriculture in their daily lives. Over the past two years, 27 county Farm Bureaus have partnered with 117 groups on 31 high-caliber programs. The total investment from OFBF and partnering groups is more than $880,000. That number will grow after the newest round of county water quality grants is awarded later this year.

With the state’s new fertilizer certification deadline fast approaching (Sept. 30), more than 12,000 farmers have completed their continuing education in fertilizer certification and have been certified by the state with OFBF helping promote the learning workshops.

Much more measurable progress in OFBF’s efforts to improve the state’s water has been made and is featured in the fourth OFBF Water Quality Status Report, which was issued in May, 2017.

The deadline is fast approaching to apply for a county Farm Bureau water quality grant. Ohio Farm Bureau has funding available for county Farm Bureau projects that improve water quality in their community. Deadline is April 14.

Caption: Chris Kurt has devoted 168 acres of his farm to be part of the demo farm project. Last August Kurt participated in the Hardin County Field Day where he was interviewed by media.