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Renewed Partnership on PEI Improves Grower Access to Sustainable Agriculture Practices

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
February 20, 2019

CHARLOTTETOWN, PEI – Growers in PEI will have improved access to verifiable sustainable agriculture solutions following the extension of a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) between Fertilizer Canada, the Government of PEI, the PEI Federation of Agriculture, the PEI Potato Board and the Kensington North Watersheds Association today.

The extension to the existing MOU on PEI signed today commits $60,000 over three years to implement 4R Certification among the Island’s agri-retailers. 4R Certification is a voluntary program that allows agri-retailers to train their staff and align with the sustainability principles of 4R Nutrient Stewardship (Right Source @ Right Rate, Right Time, Right Place®).

Verified by a third-party audit, 4R Certified agri-retailers are able to offer their grower customers advice on science-based best management practices that are proven to reduce on-farm environmental impacts while increasing grower productivity. 4R Demonstration trials over the last six years have found that the average crop value of harvests increased by $80 to $200 per acre compared to standard practice plots due to better yield and quality. In addition, Dr. David Burton a Canadian 4R researcher from Dalhousie University, found that applying the 4Rs in potato production in PEI can reduce nitrate leaching into the soil by as much as 32 per cent.

“PEI was the first Canadian province to sign an MOU with Fertilizer Canada to implement 4R Nutrient Stewardship for our growers. Since 2012, this partnership has demonstrated the benefits of the sustainability framework at over 64 local trials and has increased adoption of best management practices on almost 13,000 PEI farm acres,” said Dave Mol, President, Prince Edward Island Federation of Agriculture. “The continuation of this partnership will support sustainability and increased productivity for even more PEI growers.”

Over the next three years, the MOU partners will work with the agri-retail community to advance the 4R Certification program. Acres managed by 4R Certified retailers are counted towards Fertilizer Canada’s goal to verify farm land under 4R Nutrient Stewardship as a way to track the uptake of sustainable agriculture in Canada.

“Fertilizer Canada is pleased to be extending this agreement with our partners on PEI,” said Catherine King, Vice President, Industry Reputation. “The advancement of 4R Certification demonstrates the industry’s commitment to providing sustainable solutions for the province’s growers.”

More information on 4R Nutrient Stewardship and sustainable farming in PEI can be found at fertilizercanada.ca/nutrient-stewardship/4rs-across-canada/prince-edward-island.

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Fertilizer Canada represents manufacturers, wholesale and retail distributors of nitrogen, phosphate, potash and sulphur fertilizers. The fertilizer industry plays an essential role in Canada’s economy, contributing $23 billion annually and over 76,000 jobs. The association is committed to supporting the fertilizer industry with innovative research and programming while advocating sustainability, stewardship, safety and security through standards and Codes of Practice. Please visit fertilizercanada.ca.

 MEDIA CONTACT:
Kelly McCarthy
Manager, Communications
kmccarthy@fertilizercanada.ca
613-786-3035

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