Bayer to establish carbon farming practices at farmer’s level

Photo: Peter Roek
Photo: Peter Roek

Bayer launches its Carbon Initiative; a decarbonisation program for agriculture in Europe. The program’s main goal is to fight climate change by establishing carbon farming practices at farmers’ level with benefits for the entire agricultural value chain.

According to Lionnel Alexandre, Carbon Business Venture Lead for Europe, Middle East and Africa at Bayer Crop Science, the main idea is to reward growers for adopting climate-smart farming practices like using cover crops, tillage reduction, crop rotations and precision nitrogen application. “These activities sequester carbon in the soil while improving soil health, resilience and productivity as well as limit emissions.”

Digital tool for carbon farming

Bayer will develop a digital tool which will allow farmers to claim rewards based on accurate and verified data. It will be compliant with current data privacy standards and will be reliable and simple to operate for every farmer. This digital Monitoring, Reporting and Verification (MRV) solution builds on Bayer’s digital farming platform Climate FieldView.

Smart farming practices

After establishing the current carbon content in the participating farmers’ lands as the baseline for the project, farmers will implement climate smart farming practices like using cover crops and tillage reduction, says Bayer. This implementation of new practices will be continuously monitored and improved.

Also read: How to make money from carbon soil sequestration?

The learnings and the further insights gained from the participating project partners from across the food value chain is to inform the design and implementation of an accurate and reliable digital MRV tool. The program is expected to deliver this new digital solution in the next three years, while its implementation within Climate FieldView is planned for the third year.

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Farmers will implement climate smart farming practices like using cover crops and tillage reduction. - Photo: Lex Salverda
Farmers will implement climate smart farming practices like using cover crops and tillage reduction. - Photo: Lex Salverda

Sequestration of carbon

“An intact soil structure and organic matter soil management are decisive for securing my income”, said Stefanie Peters, Agro-Farm GmbH Nauen and part of the Bayer ForwardFarming network. “In my opinion, carbon farming, the sequestration of carbon in the soil, can make a great contribution to this. I am also looking forward to working with a variety of partners within Bayer’s carbon program.”

Global Carbon Initiative

The European launch is part of Bayer’s Global Carbon Initiative which launched in the U.S. and in Brazil in July 2020. In these countries, Bayer is the first agriculture company to offer all the necessary technologies in terms of seeds and traits, crop protection and digital solutions, cost-efficient MRV and certification according to internationally recognized standards.

Also read: Soil carbon market could grow quickly globally

Claver
Hugo Claver Web editor for Future Farming