HOW WE "FINDS BALANCE” BY WORKING WITH FARMERS TO SUPPORT OUR NATURAL RESOURCES

GENERAL

February 23, 2018
Matt Carstens
by Matt Carstens
Tune into the Planet Forward Facebook Live Stream to Learn More

On Friday, February 23 at 12:30 p.m. Eastern time, I am participating in Planet Forward’s salon entitled “Finding Balance: The Story of Food & Water on a Changing Planet.”

As a farmer-owned cooperative driven by our member-owners, we at Land O’Lakes understand the need to balance both economic sustainability and environmental stewardship. Throughout the food value chain, companies, consumers, producers and farmers are all making commitments to ensure the viability of our food supply for generations to come. This means protecting our natural resources such as air, soil and water, but it also means strengthening rural economies and creating a more connected relationship between consumers and those who work hard to feed them. 

Founded in 2016, Land O’Lakes SUSTAIN, a standalone sustainability driven business unit within the Land O’Lakes enterprise, is focused on driving meaningful impacts both on the farm and in the entire food industry. We work directly with our member-owners, meeting them where they are on their conservation journey and providing customized solutions in the form of tools, practices and expertise to advance systemic conservation efforts that balance the economic well-being of the farm and the health of our shared environment. We do this by:
  • Delivering unmatched scale and capability to engage farmers in advancing conservation solutions across millions of acres of farmland.
  • Collecting on-farm data to help farmers continuously improve their stewardship and help consumers understand how their food was produced.
  • Connecting the food and agriculture value chain, bringing together macro, company-level sustainability commitments and micro, acre-by-acre conservation efforts.
To date, the Land O’Lakes SUSTAIN team has made measurable improvements in on-farm conservation around the country while still supporting the productivity and profitability of our member-owners. For example, in our home state of Minnesota, we are working with local farmers and regulators to improve water quality statewide. Our conservation agronomists work directly with farmers, using Agren® BufferBuilder to custom design field buffers that keep nutrients and sediment in the fields where they belong and not in the local waterways, while also maximizing working cropland acres. Using a technical assistance tool like BufferBuilder is just one of the ways Land O’Lakes SUSTAIN is working to improve natural resources while also balancing the strength of our rural communities.

To learn more about Land O’Lakes SUSTAIN, tune into the Planet Forward live stream at 12:30 p.m. Eastern.
 
AUTHOR
Matt Carstens
Matt Carstens // Senior Vice President, SUSTAIN
Matt joined Land O’Lakes, Inc. in 2015 and serves as a senior vice president of Land O’Lakes SUSTAIN, a business unit formed in 2016. He also provides leadership in aligning environmental sustainability efforts across the enterprise. With 21 years in the agriculture industry, Matt’s experience spans retail, wholesale and manufacturing functions in the crop inputs business. Matt graduated with a Bachelor’s degree in agricultural business from Iowa State University. His passion for agriculture developed on his family’s farm and has only deepened after spending years in the industry.