Nu Life Market Partners with SEC to Quantify Sorghum Sustainability Metrics
May 31, 2022
SCOTT CITY, Kan. and WEST DES MOINES, Iowa — Nu Life Market has partnered with Sustainable Environmental Consultants (SEC) with support of the United Sorghum Checkoff Program to identify current progress and potential growth among their sorghum farmers. Using SEC’s independent third-party sustainability platform, EcoPractices®, the recent project provides Nu Life Market and supports U.S. sorghum growers with actual in-field practice data.
“Grain sorghum has always been recognized as the climate friendly crop because of its ability to utilize fewer natural resources in the production of its grain. As president of Nu Life Market, it is an absolute pleasure to see the validation of our work in identifying and implementing sorghum crop management practices that substantially reduce greenhouse gas emissions. Nu Life Market customers will now have the opportunity to purchase ingredients made using sorghum with per-field sustainability metrics, tracked by a third-party, to ensure confidence in these growers having a positive environmental impact,” Earl Roemer, President, Nu Life Market.
In 2020, Nu Life Market and Sustainable Environmental Consultants began their partnership with a sustainability analysis of over 7,000 acres among Kansas sorghum growers.
The project focused on assessing the environmental impacts of in-field practices across 52 fields focusing on the areas of soil health, water, economics, and carbon.
Overall, the project fields received a positive trajectory rating based on the Natural Resources Conservation Service’s (NRCS) Soil Conditioning Index (SCI). The SCI is a tool which predicts the consequences of cropping systems and tillage practices on soil organic matter.
The positive rating predicts increasing soil organic matter based on the in-field farming practices. Organic matter is a primary indicator of soil quality.
In addition to the positive SCI rating, the average soil erosion rate among the project acres was 0.8 T/ac, which is 83% lower than the national average of 4.6 T/ac.
95% of the project acres are under dryland production which means the water used to produce the crop is solely from precipitation. One of the biggest benefits of growing sorghum is its drought tolerance and capability to grow in arid to semiarid conditions.
Net GHG Emissions and Soil Carbon
From the management practices by Nu Life Market project growers, which was 95% no-till and no cover crops during 2020, the following in-field environmental outcomes resulted:
- -0.3 T CO2e/ac Net GHG Emissions
- 0.2 T C/ac Soil Carbon Sequestered
When compared to conventional practices (i.e. conventional tillage, no cover crop scenario), in-field farm practices generated:
- 3,031 fewer tons of CO2e emissions, which is the same as removing 588 average passenger cars off the road for one year
- 10,358 tons of soil saved instead being lost to erosion, which is enough soil to fill 647 dump trucks
About Nu Life Market
Nu Life Market brings specific grain sorghums with unique characteristics to the food industry. The company is vertically integrated from the fields to the mill to achieve the highest quality of sustainable, allergen free, Identity Preserved sorghum grain. They produce sorghum products from whole grain to bakery flour to popped sorghum.
About Sustainable Environmental Consultants
Established in 2008, Sustainable Environmental Consultants is part of the Wright Service Corp. employee-owned family of companies. Since its inception, SEC has endeavored to be a leader in providing innovative solutions to better the planet through sustainability risk management, third-party data reporting and verification, and agricultural compliance and engineering. We provide a full range of environmental services needed by food companies and their agriculture supply systems. To learn more, visit www.sustainableenviro.com.