Minnesota Corn Growers offering free nitrate screening in Fergus Falls to help farmers address water quality

The Minnesota Corn Growers Association (MCGA) is encouraging farmers to bring in water samples from wells, ditches, streams or tile outlets for free nitrate screening from 10 a.m. – 2 p.m. on May 12 at the West Otter Tail County University of Minnesota Extension office in Fergus Falls, located at 505 South Court St.

 

The screening is completely confidential and takes about 20 minutes. Nitrate testing is an easy way for farmers to get a better idea about water conditions and nutrient loss on their own farms.

 

Collecting a sample for testing is simple:

 

  • To take a ditch, stream or tile water sample, collect 1 cup of water in a clean plastic or glass container. Freeze your sample and bring it in cool for testing.

 

  • For well water, run your cold tap for 5-10 minutes and collect 1 cup of water in a clean plastic or glass container. Freeze your sample and bring it in cool for testing.

 

  •        If a sample is collected within 24 hours of testing, it does not need to be frozen, but should be kept refrigerated.

 

“Testing is quick, easy and practical,” said Noah Hultgren, MCGA president and a family farmer in Raymond, Minn. “This is another tool we’re making available to farmers as all of us continue to make water quality improvements.”

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