Yahara Pride Farms will hold its first statewide Ag Innovation Field Day scheduled on August 16.
This program showcases innovations in sustainable agriculture in the Yahara Watershed which includes southern Columbia County, Dane County and northern Rock County. Featured techniques are applicable to farms across the state with similar conservation goals.
Yahara Pride Farms developed a certification program where farms undergo an extensive voluntary audit process and achieve a specific passing score. In all cases, farms are provided with prioritized feedback on current conservation practices as well as areas for improvement.
Yahara Pride Farms has engaged the community, public utilities, environmental groups and agribusiness through a holistic approach to conservation where everyone shares in the successes and areas for learning. In 2015, farmers in the program reduced phosphorus delivery to Madison lakes and the Yahara river by 8,642 lbs. Since 2012, farmers have documented a total phosphorus delivery reduction of 15,872 lbs.
'We want to extend the invitation to farmers from across Wisconsin,' said Jeff Endres, chair of Yahara Pride Farms. 'What we are doing here in the Yahara Watershed is applicable everywhere. As farmers, we can all learn from each other.'
Farmers from across the state are encouraged to attend this event. There will also be a specific track for members of the community and media who wish to learn more about sustainable agriculture in the Yahara Watershed and beyond.
The event is free and all are welcome to attend the lunch and tours as well as the dinner and program at the end of the day. Sponsorships are also available for qualifying agribusiness partners. Go to yaharapridefarms.org for the complete schedule (including field demonstration topics) and availability. Online RSVP is required.
Parking, lunch and bus pick-up will be at Rex's Innkeeper, 301 N. Century Ave, Waunakee, beginning at 11: 30 a.m. Farmers will then board buses at 12:30 p.m. Members of the media and the general public are asked to arrive at 2 p.m. to board buses.
A social hour will begin at 5 p.m. followed by dinner, featuing WI Ag Secretary Ben Brancel as the keynote speaker.
Established in 2012, Yahara Pride Farms is a farmer-led non-profit organization that strives to preserve agricultural heritage while simultaneously encouraging farmers to engage in proactive environmental stewardship within the Yahara Watershed.