The Maryland Department of Agriculture (MDA) in May launched a new web portal as part of its new “Manure Happens” public outreach campaign. The new page centralizes resources for the general public to better understand farming practices and rules governing those practices. It also provides information for farmers who currently use chemical fertilizers and may want to consider switching to manure and farmers who are currently recycling manure as part of their crop production. The page provides links to additional resources available for farmers (i.e., grants, tax credits, technical guidance), and scientific research that describes manure management practices required by Maryland’s nutrient management program and that explains the benefits of manure.
“For centuries farmers have incorporated manure into their operations as part of a managed recycling program that provides crops with a natural fertilizer and soil conditioner. Today farmers are using the latest scientific techniques and conservation practices to protect water quality while following strict environmental rules,” said Agriculture Secretary Buddy Hance. “We hope this campaign will help people better understand life on the farm and what our farmers do to protect our precious natural resources.”
The “Manure Happens” campaign will include a series of color advertisements that will launch this weekend. MDA’s educational advertising campaign includes three different color ads. The “I Recycle” ad features happy Holstein cows in a field and highlights how farmers recycle manure following the latest scientific and environmental practices and Maryland requirements to prevent manure from washing into area waterways. The “Manure Happens” ad features the backsides of cows in a pasture and explains this fact of life on the farm – that manure is an inescapable element of the food production process and a great natural fertilizer and soil conditioner for farmers. The “Looks Can Be Deceiving” ad features a properly formed poultry litter stockpile during the winter in a field of cover crops. All three ads direct readers to the new MDA webpage www.mda.maryland.gov/manure
The ads will be published in news media outlets across the state in print and online during the next two weeks. Additionally, MDA will incorporate the ads into social media (@MdAgDept onTwitter and Facebook/MdAgDept) throughout the spring.
For more information, visit MDA’s new manure management resources page at www.mda.maryland.gov/manure