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Environmental Farm Plan

 Your Land. Your Livelihood. Your Legacy.

Take care of your land and chances are it will take care of you. Environmental farm planning helps improve the health and value of your farm, your business and leaves behind your legacy for the next generation of farmers.

What is the EFP?

The Environmental Farm Plan (EFP) is a voluntary, confidential, self-assessment process that helps farm managers identify the agri-environmental assets and risks on their operations and develop an action plan to reduce the identified risks.

The EFP has been designed to address priority issues that include the potential environmental effects of agriculture on the:

  • quality and supply of water resources (reducing nutrient, pathogen and pesticide releases to the environment and improving water conservation)
  • health and quality of soils (improving soil organic matter and reducing soil erosion caused by water, wind and tillage)
  • air and atmospheric quality (reducing particulate emissions, odours and greenhouse gas emissions)
  • biodiversity and agricultural landscapes (improving habitat availability, protecting species at risk and reducing economic damage to agriculture from wildlife)

EFPs remain and continue to be a high priority for Federal and Provincial governments in Growing Forward 2. Since 2004, over 6,000 producers have participated and completed an EFP in Manitoba, assessing over 9.3 million acres of land.


Why is an EFP important?

The continued adoption of environmental farm planning will enhance Canada's reputation as a supplier of safe, high-quality foods that are produced in an environmentally responsible manner.

By participating in this process, producers are able to:

  • identify existing environmental assets on their farm
  • raise awareness of environmental risks on their farm
  • identify actions to reduce risks
  • improve environmental sustainability
  • improve production efficiency on the farm

By implementing an action plan and adopting beneficial management practices (BMP), producers are able to:

  • help improve air, water and soil quality
  • help conserve biodiversity on Manitoba farmland
  • help contribute to environmental protection and conservation
  • make Manitoba-grown commodities more marketable to environmentally conscious consumers around the world
  • demonstrate due diligence as part of a business risk management program

"On our farm, it was a great success. It made us feel part of the solution."
Henry Holtmann, dairy farmer, Rosser MB

 "I discovered that relocating my livestock and improving their wintering site could cut back on the cost of fuel, feed and cleaning, and benefit the health of my cattle as well."

Gary Hamm, cattle producer, Morden MB

 

How to get an EFP on your farm

The EFP program is administered and delivered by Manitoba Agriculture, Food and Rural Development (MAFRD) and EFP reviews are completed by a third party. In Manitoba, the review is done through the Keystone Agricultural Producers (KAP) and is confidential.

The EFP workbook, facilitated workshops and a workbook review will help you complete the EFP process. An EFP will need to be reviewed every five years to remain valid.

Workbook

The EFP workbook covers all aspects of a farming operation and guides you through the self-assessment of your farm yards, livestock facilities and your agricultural land. Workbooks and support materials are only available to producers who attend the EFP workshops.

"Farmers are concerned about the environment and keeping it for future generations, but when you go through the workbook, you suddenly realize you could do this differently."
Lorne Rossnagel, cattle and forage producer, Plumas MB

Workshop

EFP workshops will consist of either one or two half-day sessions. At these workshops, trained MAFRD facilitators and resource specialists will introduce you to the EFP workbook so that you can assess the soil and site characteristics on your farm and learn about relevant agri-environmental concepts such as agriculture capability and soil limitations.

At the end of these workshops, the facilitators will have helped you assess your farm operation by completing your EFP workbook and developing your customized farm action plan.

Workbook Review

In order to complete the EFP program you must have your completed workbook and farm action plan reviewed by KAP. Producers work with KAP directly to complete the EFP review. To schedule a review of your workbook, contact KAP at 204-697-1140 or kap@kap.mb.ca.

An EFP is a living document and is intended to be flexible. It should be reviewed and updated regularly to record progress on your action plans and to ensure ongoing environmental sustainability for your farm operation.

Statement of Completion

After KAP has reviewed your EFP workbook, they will issue you a Statement of Completion certificate indicating you have completed the EFP process.

A Statement of Completion is valid for five years and is required to be eligible to apply for financial assistance in adopting specific beneficial management practices (BMP) under Growing Assurance - Environment.

For more information on the BMP categories you may be eligible for, refer to the Growing Assurance Adoption Catalogue.  (PDF 247 KB)

Identify your participation in EFP

An EFP farm gate sign is available to you for participating in the Environmental Farm Plan process in Manitoba.

The sign acknowledges your efforts and encourages others to follow your example of using environmentally responsible and sustainable practices on your farm.

A copy of your Statement of Completion is required to obtain your very own farm gate sign. (2 feet by 2 feet, corrugated plastic. Frame not included.)



For more information, contact your local MAFRD GO Office.

 


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