What is the Forever Green Initiative?

Perennial crops like Kernza, under development through the University of Minnesota Forever Green Initiative, hold promise for soil and water health, as well as farm profit. (Photo credit: Dodd Demas)

We know that getting to clean water in Minnesota means adding more perennial and cover crops. These crops are great for water quality and soil health, and can also benefit wildlife and our climate by sequestering more carbon.

But we also know that farm operations won't make that switch unless these crops are profitable.

That’s where Forever Green comes in.

Forever Green: The next generation of crops

The University of Minnesota's Forever Green Initiative is a perennial and cover crop development program. Through Forever Green, Minnesota is accelerating the development of economically viable winter annual and perennial crop options.

These crops can reduce runoff pollution and habitat loss currently associated with our dominant annual cropping systems (corn and soybeans) while maintaining or enhancing farm prosperity — a key goal of FMR’s water program.

While modest funding has been secured for Forever Green in recent legislative years, it’s time to ramp up our efforts to bring these next-generation clean-water crops online quickly. FMR plays a key role via our engagement in the Forever Green Partnership, a multisector collaborative that is providing the horsepower to make that scale-up possible. FMR River Guardians can support these efforts too.

Become a River Guardian

Sign up to become a River Guardian, and we'll email you when an important river issue arises and make it quick and easy to contact decision-makers. River Guardians are also invited to special events, including happy hours, about important legislative and metro river corridor.

Read our Legislative Updates blog

We write regular updates about key environment and water quality issues on our Legislative Updates page. Check back for news, follow us on social media (Facebook and Twitter), and sign up for our bimonthly e-newsletter, Mississippi Messages.

Upcoming Events

May 1-31, 2023
Orvis - Miracle Mile, St. Louis Park
Saturday, June 3, 2023 - 9:00am to 11:00am
William H. Houlton Conservation Area, Elk River
Tuesday, June 13, 2023 - 5:00pm to 8:00pm
Fair State Brewing Cooperative, Minneapolis
Ole Olson prairie, Mississippi River, Minneapolis skyline

Celebrate 30 years of FMR!

For our 30th anniversary, our wish is for you to join us in restoring, protecting and enhancing the Mississippi River.