August 13, 2015

Missouri Department of Agriculture Announces Agricultural Stewardship Assurance Program

Program sign-up begins at the Missouri State Fair in the Agriculture Building

The Missouri Department of Agriculture announced a new program today, the Agricultural Stewardship Assurance Program (ASAP). The Missouri Agricultural Stewardship Assurance Program is a verification program that champions Missouri farms that are responsible stewards of the land, provide safe food for consumers, practice environmental stewardship, and use science-based technology for growing a safe and dependable feed, fuel or fiber in a socially and economic manner. An ASAP information and sign-up booth is set up in the Agriculture Building at the Missouri State Fair from Aug. 13-23.

“By and large, Missouri’s farmers and ranchers are good land stewards, because they know that it’s vital to long-term profitability, sustainability and quality of life for them and those who will work the land in the future,” said Director of Agriculture Richard Fordyce. “Producers today plan in detail, use precision technology and implement strategies to achieve sustainability and good stewardship in their operations.  Much of this is achieved through partnerships with resource agencies and industry, but ultimately, it’s our farmers and ranchers who decide what they need to do to achieve their stewardship goals on their property.”

The goal of the program is to aid producers in their marketing efforts and provide them with the tools they need to be successful in an ever-evolving industry. The Missouri Department of Agriculture and Missouri farmers and ranchers recognize that consumers want to know more about where their food comes from and how it’s produced. Consumers are agriculture’s most important stakeholder, and consumer confidence in Missouri’s agricultural products and the source of those products is vital. ASAP will better communicate, recognize and promote the good stewardship and sustainability that Missouri producers continue to practice and improve upon.

Producers can become verified in one or more of the following categories: grassland, livestock, forestry, cropland, farmstead and energy. With that verification, producers will gain access to domestic and international markets that they may not have been able to access previously. International markets continue to increase the emphasis placed on sustainable farming. Additionally, producers will obtain third party verification of their efforts.

Producers can submit information about their operation via an online application, found at www.ASAP.farm, print the application from the website and mail it to the Missouri Department of Agriculture, P.O. Box 630, Jefferson City, MO, 65101, or call us at (573) 751-2539 to have an application sent to via mail. Those who meet the established criteria will receive ASAP verification from the Missouri Department of Agriculture.

The program is coordinated by the Missouri Department of Agriculture.

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