MyBMP recognise the value of sustainability and environmental practises.
Australia’s myBMP (Best Management Practices) program was established 25 years ago as an industry facing initiative to transition farmers to more sustainable practices.
The program has developed over two decades, taking into account new legislation farmers must follow, new technology and scientific discoveries.
Along with significant investment in research and development, the myBMP program has underpinned a transformation in Australian cotton that has resulted in a bale grown with 97% less pesticides, 48% less water and 34% less land.
The industry has not traditionally collected data for certified vs non-certified growers, as the focus has been on improving cotton production across all farms and all regions, using myBMP as the platform for change.
Cotton Australia has long argued that the sustainability impact of Australian cotton in general is very similar to that of fully certified myBMP as many of the practice changes such as integrated pest management, the use of GM technology to control pests, crop rotations, water saving technologies and low till cropping are commonly used across all regions.
And while this holds true across most sustainability practices, a recent annual survey by the Cotton Research and Development Corporation of both myBMP certified and non-certified growers has shown some differences.
The main difference is that myBMP certified farmers are the leaders and early adopters of new practices, with the survey finding four key differences between accredited and general Australian cotton farmers.
Farmers that are myBMP certified are more likely to:
- use cover cropping – which helps to hold water, circulate nitrients and provides shelter for the soil and emerging crop
- Use automated systems - which reduces the amount of labour time to water crops. It is also faster and more precise. Farmers can turn water of at exactly the right time.
- have a biosecurity plan for managing pest and disease incursions – the plan helps identify possible hazards on the farm
- assess the farm’s carbon footprint.
In Australia, about 80 per cent of cotton farmers are participating in the myBMP program, with one in five fully certified.
For more information on the myBMP program and its sustainability impact: