USA— Truterra, the sustainability business of Land O’Lakes has been awarded a $US90 million grant by the USDA to scale production and demand for climate-smart corn, soybeans, wheat, cotton and milk production, as part of the U.S. Department of Partnerships for Climate-Smart Commodities US$2.8 billion investment.

Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack along with Land O’Lakes CEO Beth Ford highlighted the significance of the project in a press conference. “The current market for climate smart commodities has a connection and a scale problem,” Ford said.

“Farmers interested in producing climate smart commodities and companies interested in purchasing them need connection. Very often, both farmers and companies interested in purchasing climate smart commodities lack the necessary infrastructure, tools, and information to build more sustainable links in their supply chain.”

The pilot project will bridge the gap through ag retailers working with grant partners to incent farmers to adopt regenerative agriculture practices, help match farmers with incentives, offer agronomic advice, data entry support and more, to support improved soil health systems.

Farmers interested in producing climate smart commodities and companies interested in purchasing them need connection. Very often, both farmers and companies interested in purchasing climate smart commodities lack the necessary infrastructure, tools, and information to build more sustainable links in their supply chain

Beth Ford, Land O’Lakes CEO

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The project aims to achieve GHG emissions reductions of approximately 7.2 million metric tons CO2e over five years, or roughly the equivalent of removing 1.5 million cars from the road for a year.

“Land O’Lakes is ready to tackle what is fundamentally a connection problem in the current climate-smart commodities market. We want to close those gaps by creating a self-sustaining ecosystem that connects farmers already doing incredible work to support sustainability on their operations with the food and agriculture companies looking to buy those products, all while addressing cost, risk and knowledge barriers to regenerative agriculture practice adoption,” said Beth Ford.

Leveraging the unparalleled reach of the Land O’Lakes cooperative network, AFT and other grant partners and supporters, the pilot project seeks to engage up to 20,000 farmers and dairy producers and impact more than 7 million acres, with a focus on reaching historically underserved farmers.

Grant partners will deploy digital infrastructure, including the Truterra sustainability tool, to aid in measuring environmental impact and supporting validation and quantification processes.

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