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News Release

Local Cover Crop Forum to Explore Opportunities to Build Soil Health

Contact: Delaney Johnson
State Soil Scientist
Contact#: 601-965-5205 ext 2121


Jackson, MS - February 7, 2014 - Farmers, ranchers, researchers, agricultural business operators and conservationists are invited to participate in a forum on cover crops and soil health, hosted by USDA's Natural Resources Conservation Service at 8:30AM, on February 18, 2014, at five different locations in Mississippi (Brandon, Lucedale, Natchez, Pontotoc and Stoneville).

Each local session is one of more than 225 forums taking place throughout the country in concert with the National Conference on Cover Crops and Soil Health in Omaha, Nebraska, sponsored by the Howard G. Buffett Foundation.

In addition to providing a venue to discuss local cover crop and soil health opportunities, benefits and barriers, the forums in Mississippi will feature live-streaming video of the national conference opening session featuring presentations by Howard G. Buffett of the Howard G. Buffett Foundation, NRCS Chief Jason Weller, Ray Gaesser, Iowa Farmer and President of the American Soybean Association and a panel of four leading cover crop and soil health farmers.

NRCS State Conservationist, Kurt Readus said, "The local-level forums will provide NRCS and its conservation partners and stakeholders a platform to more fully organize and enable state and local soil health efforts at the grassroots level."

"The local forums will provide an excellent opportunity of participants to discuss how to build soil health, improve yields, curb erosion, manage pests and build resilience in farming systems here in Mississippi and to assess opportunities for, or barriers to, the broader adoption of soil health management systems, " Readus said.

Readus stated that the local forum participants will also have the opportunity to provide ideas and recommendations to the leaders, researchers, innovators and policy makers attending the national conference.

The five session locations are: 1) Rankin County Extension Office, 601 Marquette Road, Brandon, MS  39042; 2) George County Extension Office, 7128 Highway 198 East, Lucedale, MS  39452; 3) Adams County Extension Office, 75 Carthage Point Road, Natchez, MS  39120; Pontotoc County Extension Office, 402 CJ Hardin Jr. Drive, Pontotoc, MS  38863 and 5) Capps, Delta Research & Extension Center, 82 Stoneville Road, Stoneville, MS  38776.

To participate in one of the local forums, contact Walter Jackson, State Agronomist at 601-965-4139 ext. 2164 or email or James Curtis, Assistant State Soil Scientist at 601-965-5205 ext. 2160 or email by February 14, 2014, to ensure adequate seating and to get additional details about the event.


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