Sugarcane Field Day

10/27/2020 – Napoleonville, La. – Sustainability, improved soil heath and better water quality were the main themes of a successful Sugarcane Field Day that was held at Keith Dugas Farm in Assumption Parish on October 27th. Event attendees were provided with unique learning opportunities and hands-on demonstrations that highlighted the benefits of the best management practices being researched on this project.

Field Day Presentation

Pictured from left to right: Keith Dugas, Dr Brenda Tubana, and Daniel Forestieri during a technology presentation. Photo by Rexanna Powers/LSU AgCenter.

The focus of this event was directed to one of the two model farms that are part of a $1.4 million grant to the LSU AgCenter from the Patrick F. Taylor Foundation. Keith Dugas Farm houses the roughly 65-acre sugarcane portion of the project. This project seeks to reduce losses and the amount of chemicals that are used in and lost from current agricultural practices by developing a portfolio of practices that improve environmental sustainability.

Farmer Presenting Information

Keith Dugas presents about his experience with yield monitors. Photo by Rexanna Powers/LSU AgCenter

Many presentations emphasized the factors that contribute to the sustainability practices of an industry and the responsibilities that agriculturalists have to make a positive change. Among several presentations and guest speakers, field tours were given of the practices that are currently being tested on small plots. A portfolio of 8 best management practices were highlighted during field day: cover crops, crop rotation, residue management, reduced tillage, fertility management, crop selection, water management, and integrated pest management.

Researcher Presenting in Field

Al Orgeron, Weed Scientist/LSU AgCenter presented insightful information about the types and benefits of cover crops in sugarcane production. Photo by Rexanna Powers/LSU AgCenter.

Dr. Kenneth Gravois, Sugarcane Specialist, made a profound statement to draw attention to the vitality of sustainability in Louisiana agriculture.

“In Louisiana, we are a family-farming state,” he said. “Generations of family farms make our agriculture industry successful and that is sustainability.”

A large group of local producers attended the event to learn about the best management practices that will improve ecosystem services and reduce chemical fertilizer losses. These practices are ultimately environmentally and financially sustainable.

4/9/2021 10:11:30 PM
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