• Iowa’s rich soil makes it an ideal place to grow crops, but the state’s abundance of farms also leaves it vulnerable to water conservation issues.
  • Focused on sustainability, Cargill and The Coca-Cola Company team up to equip farmers with better tools for water preservation. Chief among them is the Field to Market® Fieldprint® Calculator.
  • Farmers enter data into the calculator to understand how their operations affect the environment, which helps them better plan for the future.

Investigating agricultural solutions in Iowa

Cargill and The Coca-Cola Company team up to deliver strategies that improve sustainability practices on local farms.

Iowa’s arable landscape and deep, fertile soil make it an ideal location for farming corn, soybeans and other crops. But as one of the most heavily farmed states, Iowa also faces water conservation issues like nitrogen runoff, in which nitrogen from fertilizer makes its way into bodies of water. Nitrogen in water fertilizes blooms of algae that deplete oxygen, which can kill fish and other aquatic life, and harm overall water quality. Cargill partnered with The Coca-Cola Company in 2013 to explore innovative solutions for helping farmers combat this and other problems.

Concerned with sustainability and environmental impact, Cargill and Coca-Cola met with farmers in rural Iowa to better understand their use of nitrates, and to learn about their strategies for protecting water environments and promising a continued supply of fresh water for future generations.

Learning from these visits resulted in the creation of the Field to Market® Fieldprint® Calculator, a tool from The Keystone Center that Cargill and Coca-Cola helped develop. Iowa farmers enter information about their businesses into the online calculator, which computes the data and shows farmers how their decisions impact their performance and environmental footprint. With a more detailed, long-term perspective, these farmers are empowered to make smarter, sustainably minded decisions for the future.

Today, Cargill continues to support Iowa farmers as they work toward their sustainability goals. For instance, the company acts as a sponsor for the Boone River Watershed Initiative. This program organizes workshops in central Iowa to provide information, strategies and demonstrations that encourage conservation efforts while supporting agriculture throughout the region.