September 28, 2021

Bayer carbon program looks back to look ahead

DECATUR, Ill. — By looking back through historical records, Bayer Crop Science’s carbon program is aiming to look forward — and attract interest from another sector.

“There is a huge amount of interest in carbon markets across the industry,” said Lisa Streck, carbon business model grower program lead for Bayer Crop Science.

One new aspect of the program that’s in its second year is reaching out to a segment of the farming population that has struggled to find a place in ag carbon credit programs — established conservation farmers.

“New this year, we allow those farmers who have adopted some practices in the past that would qualify,” said Streck at the Farm Progress Show in Decatur.

Streck said farmers who have adopted conservation and carbon-friendly farming practices, such as no-till and cover crops, since 2012 may be eligible to participate in Bayer’s carbon farming program.

“Farmers who have started practices since 2012 may be eligible for up to five years of historic payments. We will work with those farmers on an individual basis to understand what data we need to collect with them. Essentially, if Bayer can generate a carbon credit off of those historical practices, we will pay those growers for up to five years of historical practices,” she said.

One unique aspect of the Bayer program is that it incentivizes farmers by paying for practice and not per ton of carbon generated.

With the Bayer Carbon Program, you may be able to get paid for climate-smart practices you’ve already implemented or plan to implement.

The program is in its second year. Streck said Bayer expanded the geography covered by the program. Enrollment for the 2021 program is live and Streck said Bayer continues to work with and educate farmers about carbon credits and carbon markets.

“Now we cover 17 states, so we have great coverage over the core Midwest and have expanded out to some southern and eastern states. We are really excited about the number of acres we have enrolled in the program and we are looking forward to farmers continuing to enroll throughout our open enrollment period,” she said.

Jeannine Otto

Jeannine Otto

Field Editor