Agricultural producers throughout the U.S. are invited to attend a free, live broadcast of the February 18thNational Conference on Cover Crops and Soil Health.Producers can join the conversation at one of more than 200Cover Crops and Soil Health Forumsto be hosted nationwide by the Natural Resource Conservation Service (NRCS) and Cooperative Extension offices.

The event organizers would like producers to pre-register at the event location. There is no cost to participate, but providing an RSVP will help host locations make adequate accommodations, according to event organizers.

Each forum will featurea live-streamed video broadcast of the opening sessions of theNational Conference on Cover Crops and Soil Healthin Omaha, NE. Following the broadcast, attendees will have a chance to have discussions with fellow forum participants about how cover cropping can build soil health, improve yields, curb erosion, manage pests and build resilience in a farming system.

The broadcast will feature:

· Howard G. Buffett, Howard G. Buffett Foundation

· Jason Weller, USDA-NRCS Chief

· Ray Gaesser, American Soybean Association president

· A panel of expert producer conservationists:

· Dave Brandt (Ohio)

· Gabe Brown (North Dakota)

· Dan DeSutter (Indiana)

· Clay Mitchell (Iowa)

The forums are open to anyone who would like to hear about and discuss the prospects for cover crops and soil health improvements on American farms and ranches. The broadcast will begin at 9:00 a.m. CST for participants from the Eastern, Central, and Mountain regions of the United States. The broadcast will be re-streamed at 10:00 a.m. PST for participants in the Pacific region or further west.Attendees are encouraged to arrive 30 to 45 minutes ahead of time for check in and introductions.Find a forum location near you.

This forum is being jointly funded by the USDA-NIFA Sustainable Agriculture Research and Education (SARE) program and the Howard G. Buffett Foundation. A diverse committee of cover crop and soil health experts have planned the program, including representatives of USDA-NRCS staff and the Midwest Cover Crops Council. Logistics for the conference are being handled by the Soil and Water Conservation Society.