August 15, 2014, Annapolis, MD –The Maryland Department of Agriculture (MDA) has launched a targeted information program aimed at farmers as part of its recently introduced “Manure Happens” public outreach campaign.
The end-of-summer campaign includes a series of four educational ads being circulated this month on social media and in agricultural newspapers throughout the state encouraging farmers to consider using manure as a fertilizer and soil conditioner.
The ads describe the benefits of using manure to improve the soil, increase yields and save on commercial fertilizer costs. Farmers are directed to MDA’s new “Manure Happens” web site for more comprehensive insight on the benefits of manure, including information on grants to haul and incorporate manure into fields along with tax breaks for qualifying equipment.
“With the adoption of new nutrient management requirements placing limits on manure use, it is important to open up markets for livestock and poultry farmers who may need to transport their manure to other farms that can use this valuable resource safely using the latest scientific techniques and conservation practices to protect water quality in streams, rivers and the Chesapeake Bay,” said Maryland Agriculture Secretary Buddy Hance.
The farmer education campaign includes four-color advertisements. The “Talk is Cheap” ad focuses on the benefits of poultry litter as a soil conditioner and fertilizer. The “Change is Good” and “Strike Pay Dirt” ads highlight the economic benefits of switching to manure as a crop fertilizer. The “Grow with Manure” ad encourages farmers to look into the benefits of using dairy manure on their crop fields. All four ads direct readers to the new MDA webpage www.mda.maryland.gov/manure.
The ads will run on social media and in agricultural publications throughout August. Additionally, MDA will incorporate the ads into social media (@MdAgDept on Twitter and Facebook/MdAgDept) throughout the spring.