The principles of climate smart agriculture (CSA) are at the heart of NACSAA’s role in promoting farming, ranching and forestry practices that can address changing climatic conditions and ensure strong agricultural output in the years ahead. Those efforts were acknowledged this week when NACSAA was welcomed as a new member of Field to Market during its summer plenary and general assembly meeting in Chicago.
NACSAA’s entry into Field to Market: The Alliance for Sustainable Agriculture, an organization that brings together a diverse group of grower organizations; agribusinesses; food, beverage, restaurant and retail companies; conservation groups; universities and public sector partners, signals the importance of climate related challenges and opportunities in defining, measuring and advancing the sustainability of food, feed, fiber and fuel production. Field to Market is comprised of more than 140 members representing all facets of the U.S. agricultural supply chain, with members employing more than 5 million people and representing combined revenues totaling over $1.5 trillion.
Field to Market has taken on the mission of harnessing the collective action of the value chain to support resilient ecosystems and enhanced farmer livelihoods. CSA can support these efforts through three complementary strategies: 1) sustainably increasing agricultural productivity and livelihoods (i.e. sustainable intensification); 2) enhancing adaptive capacity and improving resilience; and 3) delivering ecosystem services, sequestering carbon, and reducing and/or avoiding greenhouse gas emissions.
Earlier this year, Field to Market launched the 2019-2021 Strategic Plan, which builds on more than a decade of the organization’s role as the leading multi-stakeholder organization committed to defining, measuring and advancing sustainability in commodity crop production in the United States. In detailing the plan, the Alliance notes that the food and agriculture industry faces increasingly complex challenges. Recognizing the sector’s mission to produce food, feed, fiber and fuel for a growing and more affluent global population, Field to Market notes that conserving our natural resource base and adapting to a changing climate is foremost.
The Alliance acknowledged that a major premise of its strategic plan involves leveraging the collective influence of Field to Market’s diverse membership to meet the challenges, all while driving continuous improvement in environmental outcomes. It is a principle that aligns well with the role that Solutions from the Land and NACSAA play to incubate and advance pragmatic, proven and innovative agricultural solutions that benefit producers, the public and the planet. As an affiliate member of Field to Market, NACSAA will help inspire, educate and equip agricultural partners to innovate and lead efforts to sustain productivity, enhance climate resilience, and contribute to local and global goals for sustainable development.
Other climate smart initiatives taken on by SfL have been successfully launched and nurtured in North Carolina, Missouri and Florida. Instrumental in the success to date of these projects is the recruitment of highly respected and well networked agricultural and forestry thought leaders and value chain partners in each state – a wide-based, cooperative approach recognized by the Field to Market Alliance in its pursuit of sustainable outcomes for agriculture.
Solutions from the Land applauds NACSAA’s leadership in addressing climate challenges and is confident that through Field to Market, the alliance can help support opportunities across the agricultural supply chain for continuous improvements in productivity, environmental quality and human well-being.