Irrigation Association leads Smart Irrigation Month

Industry insights | Summer 2023
BY LUKE REYNOLDS
A person works on a laptop in an agriculture field.

In July each year, irrigation professionals have the opportunity to share the importance of efficient irrigation practices through Smart Irrigation Month. The Irrigation Association, Fairfax, Virginia, celebrates these efforts with a month-long initiative to raise public awareness. Smart Irrigation Month promotes the social, economic and environmental benefits of efficient irrigation technologies, products and services in landscape, turf and agricultural irrigation, as well as the companies and professionals who champion them.

In 2023, the Smart Irrigation Month theme is “What’s the value of smart irrigation?”

The irrigation industry is providing solutions to some of the most critical challenges facing society, including supporting global food security and protecting the water used in thriving, healthy communities. This year’s theme tells the story of how smart irrigation products, technologies and practices have a positive and beneficial impact for communities.

“The theme of this year’s Smart Irrigation Month speaks for itself,” says Natasha Rankin, MBA, CAE, chief executive officer of the Irrigation Association. “It’s easy to take for granted each and every day the impact irrigation itself, as well as the industry generally, has on the world around us. We look forward to demonstrating firsthand how the irrigation industry is a positive force for good across the country during Smart Irrigation Month.”

The Irrigation Association will focus on several key topics, including the role of irrigation in global food security, its impact on the environment, job creation and the potential for cost and resource savings.

“We look forward to highlighting these valuable benefits of smart irrigation and the specific ways irrigation contributes to society,” says Nathan Bowen, IA advocacy and public affairs vice president. “Considering the fact that the industry contributes over $23 billion to the U.S. economy and plays a key role in our nation’s food security, we are proud of our industry’s role as an indispensable national economic driver.”

There are a number of ways irrigation professionals can support and promote the objectives of Smart Irrigation Month, such as sharing the industry’s story, like Prospera Technologies and Precision Laboratories did last July.

“One of the most important decisions is when, where and how much to irrigate,” says Steel Maloney, vice president of global sales for Prospera Technologies and Valley Irrigation.

The industry is continually finding new ways to bring value to irrigation expertise through improved water stewardship, and Smart Irrigation Month provides an opportunity to highlight how efficient irrigation plays a crucial role in every community.

The Irrigation Association website offers resources including irrigation facts and information that contractors can share with customers, as well as downloadable social media graphics and templates that can be used to promote Smart Irrigation Month. And they can join in on July 11, Technology Tuesday, when the Irrigation Association encourages industry professionals to wear blue to raise awareness for smart irrigation and share photos on social media using the hashtag #SmartIrrigationMonth.

“Amplifying the value of smart irrigation and demonstrating how the products and services the industry provides to encourage efficient water management is critically important for all of us,” says Bowen. “Smart Irrigation Month is about telling our story and highlighting the value irrigated landscapes and irrigated agriculture bring to our daily lives.”

Smart Irrigation Month is sponsored by HydroPoint.

What’s the VALUE of smart irrigation?

Global food security

Through smart and efficient irrigation, our industry helps boost producers’ productivity and profitability, reduce risk, improve world food production, ensure national security and overcome pressures on water resources.

Precision agriculture

Smart irrigation allows farmers to provide water at the right time, in the right place and in the right amount to maximize yield while saving money through increased automation and reduced inputs and energy costs.

Protecting our environment

Smart irrigation helps farmers use water more efficiently and apply inputs more precisely, reducing pollution runoff and lowering greenhouse gas emissions.

Cost-savings

Efficient irrigation maximizes yield and crop quality while reducing water loss and crop inputs. Farmers can incorporate smart irrigation technology to be both profitable and sustainable.

Luke Reynolds is the content editor for Irrigation & Lighting and can be reached via email.
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