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Farmers Focus on Soil Health

A new generation of Heartland farmers is focusing on soil health, according to a feature in The Christian Science Monitor. Farmers working on slim margins can be reluctant to change the way they operate, notes the article, citing the example of how long it took farmers to adopt no-till methods. But now “hotspots” of innovative farmers are leading a movement to make soil health a top priority by using cover crops and crop rotations. Other approaches include alternative crops–such as perennial grains–and integrating livestock and crops. The 2018 Farm Bill contains provisions that can help reward these efforts, and there’s increasing awareness that improving soil health can deliver water-quality and food-nutrient benefits.