To the editor:

The grass on my farm is going to be greener this year and I don’t like it. Last winter my pasture based livestock farm continued to witness the transfer of my neighbors’ topsoil onto my farm. Sadly, only with the strongest winds does their soil make it across the lake I live on, lighter winds dump their soil in the lake. My grass may be greener but my water is browner.

I’ve heard from my neighbors that they’d farm like me if they could. But they are stuck in a system that they feel would be risky to break out of. Soil health practices take time and persistence to get right but are worth the investment both for farmers and the public who enjoy having healthy food, clean water and air, and a healthy place to live.

Minnesota has a chance to become a national leader in promoting soil health on farmland by passing provisions of the original “100% Soil Healthy Farming Bill.” It would, through cost-share and technical support, help farmers establish soil health practices like cover cropping, managed rotational grazing, perennial crops, and no-till.

Sen. Bill Ingebrigsten can play a big role in passing this legislation as a key member of the conference committee that will hash out what gets sent to the governor. We need to encourage him to support the House’s soil healthy farming provisions and fully fund this investment in the future of our land, water, and rural communities.

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Bryan Simon

Lakeside Prairie Farm LLC

Barrett, MN