About Green Star Farms Initiative

The Green Star Farms Initiative is a voluntary, farmer-led educational program designed to raise awareness among farmers about water quality issues; recognize the conservation practices that are already being employed by many farmers and ranchers that contribute to improved water quality, reduced soil erosion, enhanced soil health and increased wildlife habitat; and accelerate the adoption of sound conservation practices to improve water quality.

The Green Star Farms Initiative begins with an environmental evaluation process that farmers can use as a simple self-evaluation and management tool. The results of the self-evaluation guide farmers to sources of additional information and resources to address environmental concerns. Farmers and ranchers are encouraged to involve their crop consultant or other advisors who play a role in management decisions in completion of the worksheet.

The Green Star Farms Initiative allows reporting of the aggregated environmental evaluation performance of participating farmers who agree to have their worksheet included in summary reports. By aggregating evaluations across a watershed or industry sector, farm organizations can report the extent to which good conservation practices are applied on farms and ranches. Only reports that generate a composite score based on a minimum of ten worksheets are reported, and individual identification is never included in summary reports.

Aggregated environmental evaluation information also provides valuable information for farm organizations, researchers, USDA-NRCS and others in identification of topical areas for research, education and conservation programs.

Participation in the Green Star Farms Initiative demonstrates the commitment of individual farmers and ranchers to protect water quality and highlights the collective actions being taken by the agriculture sector to achieve sustainability through continuous improvement.

Primary funding for the Green Star Farms Initiative and other MAWRC programs is provided by Minnesota farmers through the Minnesota Soybean Research and Promotion Council and the Minnesota Corn Research and Promotion Council- your check-off dollars at work!