Countryside COP: The role of nutrient management

11 October 2021

Farming landscape with grazing cattle

This week sees the launch of the very first Countryside COP event. The new Agriculture & Land Use Alliance (ALA) will host the event which aims to showcase and inspire net-zero activity in rural communities and agri-food supply chains.

So how can a nutrient management help mitigate climate change?

Nutrient management can benefit both the farmer and the environment. Improving the efficiency of manure and fertilizer usage reduces application rates and the amount of excess nutrients which may be lost to the environment through leaching or run off.

  • Nutrient management plan: a nutrient management plan aims to match nutrient application with the crop and soil requirements. This reduces the amount of excess nutrients which may be lost to the environment, nitrogen could be lost to water and air and phosphate could be carried into watercourses by soil erosion and run off.
  • Minimise the amount of artificial and organic fertilisers applied: this targeted approach means you only apply what you need. By reducing the quantity of artificial and organic fertilisers used, you will reduce ammonia emissions and improve air quality and human health.
  • Improved soil management: improved soil management through efficient manure application can increase soil organic matter and improve soil structure. A well- structured soil is less likely to be affected by soil compaction which in turn will reduce the chances of run‑off, leaching and soil erosion.
  • Improves farm productivity: by implementing a nutrient management plan it will help achieve a better overall Farm Nutrient Balance with more efficient use of nutrients across the farm and for each crop improving crop yield and quality.

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