Bill Northey, Iowa Secretary of Agriculture, presented Highway Equipment Company, manufacturer of Hi-Way road maintenance equipment New Leader crop nutrient applicators, with the 2016 Iowa Ag Leader award for leadership water quality within the category of conservation.

New Leader was recognized for leading in the efforts that contribute positively to Iowa's Nutrient Reduction Strategy through improved nutrient management equipment development and manufacturing. One such example of leadership in this area is the new NL4500 G4 Edge. The Edge crop nutrient applicator allows users to apply materials with increased precision along a boundary line, positioning nutrients where crops need them while at the same time keeping them out of sensitive areas.

The 4R nutrient stewardship guidelines, endorsed and supported by the International Plant Nutrition Institute, The Fertilizer Institute, The Canadian Fertilizer Institute, and the International Fertilizer Industry Association, promote fertilizer best management practices to achieve cropping system goals while minimizing field nutrient loss and maximizing crop uptake. To achieve these goals, the 4R concept incorporates the use of the right fertilizer source, at the right rate, at the right time and in the right place.

In addition to New Leader, Northey recognized agribusinesses LaCrosse Seeds, Agriland FS and AgriDrain and CCAs Pat Tekippe from Winneshiek County, Iowa and Terry Grote from Black Hawk County, Iowa. Northey presented the awards at the Agribusiness Association of Iowa’s Showcase and Conference at the Iowa State Fairgrounds in Des Moines, Iowa.

“Partnerships have been a key to the Water Quality Initiative since the very start and it is great to be able to recognize these ag businesses and Certified Crop Advisors that have really taken a leadership role in helping advance water quality efforts in the state,” Northey said.