The Cultivating Resilience field day will showcase new and emerging practices that promote soil health, give producers practical conservation knowledge that they can use to evaluate their operations, and bring new knowledge to West Michigan. This year’s theme will be focused on the groundwater issue in Ottawa and surrounding counties and this issue’s impact on local agriculture.
We are delighted to host John Yellich, Director of Michigan Geological Survey at Western Michigan University who will speak on the groundwater issue as a keynote session. A panel discussion will be held on the topic of buffer strips, grassed waterways, and drain management by Drain Commissioner Joe Bush and Program Director for River Basin at the Michiana Area Council of Governments, Matt Meersman.
Onsite demonstrations will include a farm walk given by our host, Mike Bronkema, and Matt Raven, a Professor in the Department of Community Sustainability at MSU, showcasing different conservation techniques including rotational grazing, holistic management, buffer strips, and weed management. Additional breakout sessions will include follow-ups for previously held events, and district program updates.
As agriculture in West Michigan faces continued challenges – from extreme rainfall to groundwater shortages – cultivating resilience in our agricultural community is essential. Please review the enclosed sponsorship opportunities and consider a commitment of your resources as an event sponsor to support local agriculture.