March Aggregate
In this edition: 
- ISAP Welcomes IL CCA 
- Illinois Service Provider Survey
- Sand County Foundation Report
- Partner Spotlight: AFT
- Field Notes
- Featured Illinois Job
- Upcoming Opportunities
ISAP's Newest Member: Illinois CCA

ISAP is excited to welcome the Illinois Certified Crop Advisers (CCA) to the current 13-member partnership. The Illinois CCA Program has a history of collaborating with many of ISAP members on education initiatives, seeking out opportunities to co-host informational webinars, trainings, events, and field days.

The CCA Program also serves as a platform for sharing other continuing education opportunities with farm advisers who may be influencing the management decisions growers are making.

Read the Press Release!
Conservation Service Provider Directory

ISAP is developing a public directory of ag service providers who assist farmers with cover crops, tillage, and nutrient management practices. The goal of this directory is to help connect farmers with agriculture retailers and crop consultants who can provide information, supplies, or services.  

This is a great opportunity for service providers to promote their services and get connected with new customers who are ready to incorporate conservation techniques on their farms. Service providers submitting a response by March 31st will be entered for a chance to win $200!

Take the survey to get added to the directory!
New Sand County Foundation Report
A new report from Sand County Foundation, "Making Conservation Conventional," emphasizes the importance of placing farmer perspectives front and center in the work to expand the adoption of conservation practices.

From the report: "We worked with a range of farmers and conservation agronomists in the Upper Midwest, representing different land types, farming practices, and cropping systems. Our work with them was not just an interview, but a co-creative process inviting the farmers to generate their own ideas while providing feedback on prototypes and concepts developed by our team."

Stay tuned for additional details on an upcoming Alphabet Soup workshop where we will discuss ways to incorporate the report's findings into our work.
Register early for the April 26 workshop!

American Farmland Trust (AFT) is a national non-profit organization with a three-fold mission: protecting agricultural land, promoting environmentally sound farming practices, and keeping farmers on the land. AFT has maintained a presence in the Midwest since the early 1980s, and in 2016 was a founding member of the Illinois Sustainable Ag Partnership.

AFT has worked in the Vermilion Headwaters Watershed (VHW) since 2015 in partnership with a group of local stakeholders and farmers to support the adoption of well-managed conservation cropping systems, leading to improvements in water quality and soil health and reducing the loss of nitrogen from Illinois farmland. 
AFT was recently named “Partner of the Year” by the Livingston County Soil and Water Conservation District for their leadership in the VHW Partnership and their work with farmers to implement practices that reduce nitrogen loss. 

AFT is currently leading the development of a 9-element watershed plan for the VHW and has recently hired Jake Haar, Conservation Technician for the VHW Partnership, to work one-on-one with farmers in the watershed on the development and implementation of the plan’s goals.
Read more about AFT's recent achievements and growing team!
Field Notes

In February, ISAP Coordinator Jean Brokish presented during Lake Springfield's Lunch and Learn webinar series, providing an overview of conservation practices that build soil health, improve water quality, and support more profitable and resilient farms. 
Watch the webinar recording.

Midwest Cover Crops Council is presenting Cover Crop Training Modules as live webinars this spring. The recorded webinars and original slide decks are available for free use. 
Access the training modules

Are you a farmer currently growing or want to grow foodgrade grains? Join fellow farmers in the Upper Midwest for a twelve month paid peer-to-peer learning experience.
Apply to Midwest GRIT today
Pattern Ag is launching a new soil health testing program. Farmers will receive full dashboard insights, soil health metrics, and an end of the year summary at no cost!
Review the qualifications and apply today
ICYMI: The 2022 Conservation Cropping Seminar recording is now available. If you were unable to tune in, you can watch the recording to hear directly from conservationists, partners, and local Illinois farmers.   
Watch the Conservation Cropping Seminar.

American Farmland Trust hosted a Free Range Conversation on The Climate Benefits of Healthy Soils, sharing information on how regenerative farming practices can mitigate the impacts and adapt to the challenges of climate change. 
Listen in on the Free Range Conversation

The latest NLRS Podcast explores the ever-evolving research of measuring soil carbon and how this research informs the development of emerging carbon markets. 
Listen to Episode 45
All episodes can be found here:
Featured Illinois Job

American Farmland Trust is searching for a Midwest Crop Diversification Specialist (CDS) to be based in Illinois. The CDS will be responsible for identifying strategies to integrate small grain and perennial bioenergy crops into Midwest crop rotations while simultaneously scoping alternative market opportunities. Applications will be accepted until the position is filled.

Learn more and apply today!
Learning & Employment Opportunities
Midwest Cover Crops Council Webinar Series  | Virtual | Schedule
  • March 22 | Business opportunities and trends with cover crops & Cover Crop Economics | Register
  • March 29 | Cover crop impacts on wildlife & Pest management with cover crops | Register
  • April 5 | Grazing cover crops | Register
Illinois Cover Crop On-farm Network Call  | Mar. 23 | Virtual | Register

Healthy Farms, Healthy Communities Regional Workshop  | Mar. 23 | Crawfordsville, IN | Register

Champaign SWCD Toolshed Meeting with Dr. Shalamar Armstrong  | Mar. 24 | Homer, IL 
| Learn more

Next Generation Cover Crop Management  | Mar. 25 | Lexington, IL | Register

ILSoyAdvisor Webinar: Carbon Markets and the Soil and Water Fund | Mar. 29 | Virtual | Register

Leadership for Midwestern Watershed Conference | Mar. 30 - April 1 | Prairie du Chien, WI | Register

Conservation Drainage Network 2022 Annual Meeting | April 6 - 8 | Fort Wayne, IN | Register

To find more events related to agriculture and conservation, visit our Events page.

Precision Conservation Management is looking for a Precision Conservation Specialist

University of Illinois Extension is searching for TWO Extension Outreach Watershed Associates

Northeast Illinois FarmLink is looking for a FarmLink Coordinator

City of Decatur is hiring a Watershed and Lake Manager

American Farmland Trust is recruiting for Multiple Positions

To explore more job opportunities, visit our Careers page.
We can help you recruit - send us information on job openings.  

Don't forget to check out our website and follow us on Facebook or YouTube! 

"The Aggregate" is a monthly newsletter brought to you by the Illinois Sustainable Ag Partnership.  We strive to share information important to the agriculture and conservation community.  If you have something you'd like to share, email us:  More information about the Illinois Sustainable Ag Partnership is available on our website.   
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