The Louisiana Master Farmer Program Curriculum Includes:

Phase I
In Phase I, the producer will attend classroom instruction on environmental stewardship related to:

  • The Clean Water Act (CWA) of 1972
  • National & Louisiana water quality standards
  • Total Maximum Daily Loads (TMDLs)
  • Impacts of NPS Pollution on the Coastal Zone
  • Scenic Rivers and Streams
  • Best Management Practices (BMPs)
  • Role of Conservation Districts in conservation planning and implementation
  • The NRCS Planning Process
  • Conservation Programs

This instruction is either taught at the parish or multi-parish level, as well as twice per year through distance education. Upcoming trainings will be posted on the home page of the Master Farmer Program Web site under Upcoming Events.

Phase II

Phase II of the Master Farmer Program consists of a tour of a commodity-specific Model Farm or other site where specific BMPs are demonstrated. Selected Model Farms consist of water-quality monitoring equipment, where rainfall runoff is collected to determine if BMPs have an effect on water quality. Many of the water-monitoring stations have been relocated to LSU AgCenter research stations to incorporate additional data and information from reserach-based projects already being conducted. The tours began in 2005 and over 1,000 participants have attended these field days. Speakers from the LSU AgCenter, NRCS, LDAF, as well as industry personnel present information on conservation, BMPs, commodity-specific topics and industry-related issues. A list of upcoming field days is posted on the homepage of the Master Farmer Program under Upcoming Events.

Phase III
Phase III is the development and implementation of a farm-specific conservation plan. This plan is written for the acreage that a producer has the decision-making authority over in a specific sub-watershed. Farm conservation plans should be developed in cooperation with your NRCS area conservationist and/or the Soil and Water Conservation District office covering your region.

Upon completion of all three phases of the Louisiana Master Farmer program, producers will be in presumed compliance of Louisiana’s soil and water conservation requirements.

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The LSU AgCenter and the LSU College of Agriculture