Agriculture & Water Stewardship

Farmers & consumers working for cleaner water in Wisconsin.

Farming is a defining part of Wisconsin culture and history. Almost all of us have some personal connection to farms and farmers.

We cannot protect public health and the natural environment without considering farming’s impacts on our shared water resources.

River Alliance of Wisconsin is collaborating with farmers, processors, and consumers to change our food system’s effects on water.

Photo courtesy Matthew O.

Larger Farms & Processors | AWS Certification Program

Large farms, including Confined Animal Feeding Operations (CAFOs) will continue to be a feature of the agricultural system in the state. It is important to control their impacts through more effective and clear regulation, as well as efforts to make sustainability a central feature of their supply chains and the products produced by their farms.

The Clear Water Farms Program is helping farms in Wisconsin achieve the Alliance for Water Stewardship International Standard. Farms with this certification create rigorous water stewardship plans that exceed state standards, and set up regular monitoring and evaluation systems to demonstrate that they’re doing better by their soil and water.

Learn more about the AWS Certification.
Interested in participating? Contact us.

Smaller Farms | Clear Water Farms Commitment

For many smaller farms in Wisconsin, water stewardship is already an essential feature of what they do. Grazing operations can work to regenerate the soil while raising high quality dairy and beef. Small vegetable growers can build soil structure and prevent fertilizers from entering drinking water sources. 

Through our Clear Water Farms Commitment, farms share what they’re already doing to protect our water and committing publicly to doing even more. We share their stories so our members can vote for better water practices with their purchases. Our goal is to help promote farms that model the diverse, resilient, and regenerative practice necessary to reduce nutrient runoff.

Learn more about the Clear Water Farms Commitment.

For River Alliance Members & Consumers

Many of us still know very little about how our food is produced. Agriculture is a major source of water contamination in Wisconsin. If we want to support conservation of land and water, we need to learn more about what it takes to produce the food we eat—and support the farmers and producers who are doing right by land and water. We will continue to share resources on the important role our members, and all consumers, can play.

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Explore our blog posts on agriculture and water stewardship.


Are you—or do you know—a farmer/producer who supports clean water? We’d like to hear from you.
Contact Michael Tiboris, Clear Water Farms Director at
608-257-2424 x125 or email Michael.


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