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Farm Journal Monthly Story Lead Contest

This contest is a partnership between Extension Foundation & Farm Journal's Trust in Food initiative to lift up stories about the clients of Extension. Farm Journal is the nation’s leading business information and media company serving the agricultural market. Started 144 years ago with the preeminent Farm Journal magazine, the company serves the row crop, livestock, produce and retail sectors

August 2020 Contest: Soil Health


For this month’s Cooperative Extension feature, Farm Journal’s Trust In Food wants to hear from your county/state/region about an innovative research project, on-farm trial or farmer engagement program you or Extension is leading to help farmers measure, analyze and improve their soil health.

Are you ready to pitch your story for a national audience? Post your submission in Connect Extension by noon Eastern time on Friday, August 28th. Your story could be selected for a Farm Journal editor to write up and publish at, the No. 1 U.S. ag news site by traffic. Check out the story by Farm Journal on the June 2020 contest winner here

Submitting Your Story In Connect Extension

Submitting your story lead is easy! A short tutorial is available here. You must have a Connect Extension account to post a story. Get your free Connect Extension account, available to all Cooperative Extension professionals, at

  1. Click Post
  2. Create your post using the guidelines below
  3. Under "Collections," please choose your Cooperative Extension region and the topic area most closely aligned with your story!

Here’s what we’ll need from you:

  • Suggested Title/Headline: In a few words, what is this story about, and what is the impact? OR, the name of your county, state, and your audience (i.e. Guilford County, NC, Row Crop Producers)

  • The Challenge: In 2-3 sentences, identify the key challenge(s) the farmer, rancher or other stakeholder faced with regard to soil health. What is at stake? Any numbers, data points or anecdotes you can share to illustrate the problem will make the story more relatable to readers and create better understanding.

  • The Opportunity: In 2-3 sentences, identify how Cooperative Extension stepped up to help – with attention to the steps taken to solve the challenge, and provide data points, anecdotes and impacts. How did the farmer or person in need benefit? What data/supporting evidence can you provide? What other benefits emerged? What’s the next step this individual will be taking to maximize profitability, innovation, or reduce environmental impact? Remember: Farmers especially appreciate any insights on the economics – the cost of implementing a practice and also any savings or other financial return on investment. Special consideration will be given to content that can help add insight to the economics of resource stewardship and other benefits, such as environmental, social, community reinvestment, etc.

  • Sources: Please identify at least 3 expert sources, including phone and email (e.g. the Cooperative Extension leader, the farmer/rancher/rural resident, who contributed directly to address the issue in this area). If your story is selected, Farm Journal will develop a story for with insights representing key stakeholders involved in creating the solution.

  • Questions About The Contest: Have a question as you’re preparing your submission? Please comment below!

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