Our Focus Stewardship 4R’s Across Canada

Prince Edward Island

4R Nutrient Stewardship has been promoted and applied across Canada through a number of provincial and regional programs and initiatives.

4R Nutrient Stewardship on Prince Edward Island

The PEI 4R Designation standards were developed by a Designation Working Group and Steering Committee to create a set of standards representative of PEI agriculture, landscape and nutrient loss pathways of concern. The standards are reflective of the best available science, technology and regulatory requirements for PEI conditions. The goal of the program in PEI to is to:

  • optimize crop nutrient availability and uptake to improve crop production and soil health;
  • create long-term positive impacts on water bodies associated with agricultural production areas, including the reduction of nutrient loss to ground and surface water sources to help meet water quality standards;
  • encourage sharing on the most up-to-date information for ways to reduce on-farm greenhouse gas emissions; and
  • help the agricultural sector adapt to new research and technology in the area of nutrient stewardship

PEI receives 100 percent of its drinking water from groundwater, making it unique compared to other regions. An important component in protecting PEI’s drinking water source is sustainable nutrient management planning. Managing crop nutrients properly offers both economic and environmental benefits to producers and to the rest of society. The efficient use of nutrients from commercial fertilizers, manure, or other sources reduces input costs for crop production and minimizes the risk of nutrient losses to ground and surface water sources. The industry recognizes the potential for regulations, the importance of environmental stewardship and its role in ensuring the proper use of fertilizer.

The Kensington North Watersheds Association works with farmers and landowners on watershed issues. The proper use of fertilizer is imperative for clean water in watersheds with a large percentage of land use in field crop agriculture. Kensington North Watersheds Association is one of 24 active watershed groups on PEI.

4R Nutrient Stewardship (Right Source @ Right Rate, Right Time, Right Place®) provides an understanding of how various crop nutrients behave in the landscape, how they are utilized by crops and how to prevent their loss into the environment. Understanding which soils pose a risk of nutrient loss can assist agricultural producers in managing nutrients more efficiently and in protecting the environment. Adjustments in the crop nutrient source and application rate, timing, and placement method may greatly reduce the risk of nutrient losses.

The good news is many PEI farmers have been embracing 4R Nutrient Stewardship over the last few years resulting in increasing yields, combined with minimal impacts on the environment and environmental concerns. The evidence supporting 4R Nutrient Stewardship is still growing, the 4R plot tour series and demonstration findings suggest significant benefits when compared to traditional practices.

Follow these steps to become 4R Designated in PEI

1. Education

Getting started is simple. Fertilizer Canada’s 4R Nutrient Stewardship three-part training takes an in-depth look at sustainable fertilizer principles, which earns a Certified Crop Advisers 5.5 continuing education credits.

4R Designation eLearning

2. 4R Attestation

Submit the 4R Nutrient Stewardship attestation form to 4rdesignated@fertilizercanada.ca.

Download the PDF

3. Speaking to Your Grower Customer

Use the following resources to assist your growers in implementing 4R Nutrient Stewardship on their farms.

4R Guidance Tables

4R Grower Plan

Provincial Template

4R Nutrient Stewardship Planning Guide (Prince Edward Island)

4. Get Your Acres Counted

Counting acres under the 4R Nutrient Stewardship framework is the best way to demonstrate to customers and stakeholders what our industry is doing to be forward-thinking on sustainable agriculture.

Count Your Acres Under 4R Nutrient Stewardship

Complete the 4R Acre Form below to get your grower acres counted and help demonstrate why Canada is a leader in sustainable farming.


  • Crop being advised under 4R Nutrient Management Plan



  • Information for Special Recognition (Optional)


  • Approval by 4R Agronomist

    By signing this Repository form and based on my professional judgement as P.Ag and CCA, I verify that the principles of the 4R Nutrient Stewardship have been reviewed and the grower’s nutrient management as discussed is consistent with the the principles of 4R Nutrient Stewardship.


  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.

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Canada must choose 4R Nutrient Stewardship to meet Canada’s emission reduction targets