Conservation ag practices highlighted at 'CASI' launch

Jan 30, 2012

University of California advisors and specialists, farmers, scientists and agriculture professionals gathered Friday in Clovis to launch a new organization that could potentially save farmers time and money, and reduce their impact on the environment, wrote Robert Rodriguez in the Fresno Bee.

The event marked the establishment of the Conservation Agriculture Systems Institute, which will support research and education efforts to encourage farmers' implementation of conservation agriculture practices.

The Fresno Bee story appeared at the top of the paper's Saturday business page under the headline "UC pushes conservation."

UC Cooperative Extension cropping systems specialist Jeff Mitchell said the U.S. is behind the rest of the world in adopting reduced tillage and conservation practices. But that could change as farmers face increasing regulation.

"We are going to face increased demands to produce more in a way that is less damaging to the environment," Mitchell said. "This is not going to be business as usual anymore. And it's not just about making a profit; it is about optimizing yields and looking at the sustainability of our production methods."

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Strip tillage is one example of conservation agriculture.

By Jeannette E. Warnert
Author - Communications Specialist