New Land O'Lakes Platform Supports Farming Stewardship

Source: Land O'Lakes

Land O'Lakes has launched an interactive digital platform that helps farmers advance stewardship goals while helping food companies measure their sustainability progress.

Introduced by the dairy cooperative's Land O’Lakes Sustain initiative, the Truterra Insights Engine will leverage soil, weather, economic and farm management data to create customized reports identifying the potential impact of stewardship practices in real time. It will provide field-by-field insights and also track against both economic performance and conservation practices. This will help farmers make the right choices and increase ROI, the company said.

The Insights Engine will also measure and track stewardship progress over time, helping food companies achieve sustainability goals. The platform will be available this year as the core tool under the new Truterra brand.

"Truterra holds tremendous potential to harness stewardship to drive value by providing data-driven insights from farm-to-fork," said Matt Carstens, senior vice president of Land O'Lakes Sustain. "Using the [engine], farmers and food companies can establish and report clear metrics, create customized stewardship strategies that meet farmers where they are in their sustainability journey, and use a common language for on-farm stewardship that holds meaning and value. It's a major step in supporting food system sustainability that starts on the farm."

Leveraging agronomic expertise and technical capabilities from a variety of contributors, the engine enhances the value of stewardship across the supply chain. Such collaborations include USDA's Natural Resources Conservation Service and integration of the sustainability metrics of Field to Market's Fieldprint Platform. It is also tied into major private sector commitments, including Walmart's "Project Gigaton" sustainability initiative.  

One of the biggest challenges in understanding and enhancing sustainability is the lack of comprehensive tools that quantify the economic and environmental benefits for farmers. The Truterra Insights Engine was designed for farmers by a farmer-owned cooperative, agricultural retailers and experts to improve on-farm economic and natural resource stewardship.

Land O'Lakes launched Sustain in 2016. Its activities also include Ag BufferBuilder, a tool that lets conservation planners custom-design crop field buffers to trap sediment and nutrients as water flows off a field.