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Calculate your 'fieldprint' with new USB web tool

Agriculture.com Staff 11/20/2009 @ 1:10pm

United Soybean Board director Mike Thede says U.S. soybean farmers face a win-win situation with sustainability. And, to help farmers reach that goal, USB is offering a free online tool for calculating sustainability in your soybean fields, according to a USB report.

The Fieldprint Calculator analyzes the use of natural resources, such as land, topsoil and water, and key inputs, such as energy, plant nutrients and crop-protection products. The tool asks farmers to answer a series of simple questions about their operation before it tabulates the environmental footprint -- or fieldprint -- which that farmer can compare with others in their region or across the country. All information shared by farmers will be kept confidential.

"In most cases, conservation efforts and sustainability efforts can help make farmers more profitable either by cutting costs up front or increasing revenues in the future," says Thede, who grows soybeans, corn and wheat in Palmer, Nebraska. "This tool can be very helpful and beneficial to farmers because it allows them to see how even the slightest of changes in farming methods will improve the overall sustainability performance of their farm."

"I thought it was very helpful and interesting," continues Thede, who says the calculator computed his fieldprint in about 10 minutes. "It takes into account a lot of necessary information and gives back enough information to enable farmers to make decisions based on that information. It's interesting to think about how certain decisions can affect your sustainability performance."

United Soybean Board director Mike Thede says U.S. soybean farmers face a win-win situation with sustainability. And, to help farmers reach that goal, USB is offering a free online tool for calculating sustainability in your soybean fields, according to a USB report.

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