In honor of National Soil Conservation Week, which commences on April 16, the Soil Conservation Council of Canada (SCCC) has launched a new campaign encouraging Canadians to play in the dirt. Initiated by the Innovative Farmers Association of Ontario, the Soil Your Undies campaign aims to draw attention to the importance of soil health.
As part of the campaign, the SCCC wants Canadians from Prince Edward Island to British Columbia to bury a pair of cotton underwear to get an indication of how healthy their soil is. After a couple of months buried, there should be little left of the undergarments if there is good biological activity in the soil. The only things required to conduct the experiment are a pair of new, 100 percent white cotton briefs, a shovel and a flag to mark the site. A step-by-step guide is available at Solicc.ca.
“What better way to understand the inner workings of our soil than with your own easy-to-do soil science experiment,” said Alan Kruszel, SCCC chair and an Ontario farmer. “Healthy soil is full of amazing, living organisms. It is what sustains us and is the foundation of a thriving civilization. In order to show just how important healthy soils are to Canadians, the Council wants to pique the public’s interest with our Soil Your Undies initiative. We hope those who take part will share their experiences and their love for soil with us and their social networks.”
National Soil Conservation Week is an annual event that provides organizations who advocate for soil conservation and health, such as the SCCC, with a platform to remind the public of the importance of soil and the issues around its degradation and loss. To underscore its crucial role in food production and its relationship with clean air and water, SCCC will be burying undergarments at the Canada Agriculture and Food Museum in Ottawa, ON to be unearthed at a later date to reveal the degree of biological activity in the soil.
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With photos and information shared on Twitter with the hashtags #SoilYourUndies and #CdnSoilWeek17, the SCCC will present the results from the campaign at the Summit on Canadian Soil Health in Guelph, ON on August 22 and 23.