John Deere tractor with planter

(Photo: Iowa Soybean Association)

Big Soil Health Event and Trade Show

November 23, 2022 | Kriss Nelson

Soil health, the practices that help achieve it and more are the subjects of the Big Soil Health Event and trade show scheduled for Dec. 5-6 at the Bien VenU Events Center in Cedar Falls.

The Iowa Soybean Association (ISA) is sponsoring the event that will feature a systems approach to soil and human health, including diverse speakers ranging from farmers, soil health advocates, scientists and healthcare professionals.

Evan Brehm, ISA conservation agronomist has been assisting with planning the event and will be introducing speakers. ISA will also have an exhibit at the event’s trade show where Alex Schaffer, field services program manager and Julia Edlefson, producer services program coordinator, will be present.

Brehm says the event is farmer-focused, but will also benefit ag professionals within the industry.

“There will be a focus on soil health, water quality, how to read and understand soil health scores as well as a focus on managing cover crops and how on managing cover crops and how to market them alternative markets,” he says.

One alternative cover crop market will be featured in the Farm to Brew challenge, the first-ever regenerative beer contest.

On Monday, Dec. 5, the winner of this year’s Leopold Conservation Award for Iowa will be announced.

The Leopold Conservation Award is a competitive award to farmers, ranchers and forestland owners in 24 states for extraordinary achievement in voluntary conservation.

Nominees for the inaugural 2022 Iowa Leopold Conservation award are Loran Steinlage of West Union in Fayette County, Vic and Cindy Madsen of Audubon in Audubon County and Seth, Christy, Spencer and Tatum Watkins of Clarinda in Page and Taylor counties.

As a conservation agronomist, Brehm says he is impressed with the presentations available to farmers and the networking opportunities.

“It’s farmers talking to farmers,” he says. “Those involved in these soil health practices, how to manage them, sharing successes and challenges that come along with regenerative agriculture.”