Strategies to Engage Middle Adopter Farmers on Cover Crops

2016 - Present
Team Leader
Ryan Stockwell
National Wildlife Federation

This team, led by the National Wildlife Federation, will improve water quality in the Great Lakes by increasing adoption of conservation practices that improve soil health on agricultural lands throughout the basin. They will do this by identifying and testing strategies for engaging middle-to-late adopter farmers to implement conservation practices.

Current conservation outreach, policies and financial incentives strongly focus on innovators and early adopters, which comprises a small percentage (16%) of the farming population. This team will develop and test a series of outreach and communications strategies to engage the middle and late adopters (comprising 70% of farmers) that will address the fundamental cultural components of their decision making as it pertains to the implementation of conservation practices.

The project team is a collaboration of organizations that have had uncommon and notable success with this approach in localized areas. They seek to bring these lessons to scale in the Great Lakes basin.

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