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Water Quality


Water quality is important. That’s why scores of Iowa corn growers are dedicated to implementing on-farm conservation practices to improve soil and water quality, but it’s not a one-size-fits-all problem. Because every farm is different with unique conditions like soil type, geography and management practices, each farmer has to manage the many variables on his or her respective farm.


Iowa Corn Stewardship Advocate Program

As we look to continue the conversation on soil health and water quality, we are excited to launch our new Iowa Corn Stewardship Advocates program. Exclusive to Iowa Corn Growers Association (ICGA) members, the program gives you an opportunity to stay up-to-date with hot topics, news events and upcoming activities that are most relevant to your farming operation. You will receive:

  • Monthly email updates from Iowa Corn Sustainable Program Manager, Ben Gleason, and other experts on the topics of soil health, conservation and water quality
  • Inside information on stewardship topics impacting your farm
  • The scoop on upcoming Iowa Corn stewardship activities and events

Sign up to be an Iowa Corn Stewardship Advocate today!

The Proactive Efforts of Iowa Corn

Iowa Corn collaborates with key stakeholders to focus on developing and implementing workable science-based solutions to water quality issues. Here are some projects and initiatives that Iowa Corn is involved in to improve Iowa’s water:

  • The Iowa Agriculture Water Alliance (IAWA) was created and funded by Iowa Corn, Iowa Soybean Association and Iowa Pork Producers Association to advance Iowa’s voluntary, science-based nutrient reduction strategy by securing resources, promoting the adoption of conservation practices, educating the public and key decision makers and supporting research and credible data to show progress. Learn More.
  • Iowa Corn supports a variety of watershed projects across the state. This support can be financial contributions utilizing checkoff funding for research and education activities.  In-kind support is also provided by Iowa Corn staff to promote watershed project programs and events. ICGA members are encouraged to participate in their local watershed project.
  • The Iowa Nutrient Research and Education Council (INREC) is supported by ICGA and other agricultural stakeholders. The council’s three main goals include: utilize ag retailers and crop advisors to measure private sector funded conservation practice adoption; provide neutral, science-based validation of environmental products and services; and enhance the role of ag retailers and crop advisors in accelerating the adoption of conservation practices. Iowa Corn Animal Agriculture & Environment committee member and ICPB Vice President, Roger Zylstra, serves as secretary on the INREC board of directors.
  • The Iowa Corn Promotion Board (ICPB), Iowa State University and the Iowa Department of Agriculture and Land Stewardship are partnering on a new effort to improve farm productivity and water quality. The project involves documenting the effectiveness of in-field and edge-of-field nutrient management practices for selected drainage districts in Palo Alto, Pocahontas and Clay Counties in Iowa.
  • ICGA supports the National Corn Growers Association’s Soil Health Partnership. The partnership is establishing a network of demonstration farms to evaluate the economic and environmental benefits of soil health practices such as cover crops and reduced tillage. Learn More.
  • ICPB has invested in research resulting in issued patents for a nitrogen use efficiency trait for corn. This allows more bushels of corn to be grown with the same amount of nitrogen fertilizer that has potential water quality benefits. Learn More.

For more information on water quality and about our partnerships, click the resources below.




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