Farmers First

Nutrient recycling land application
Corn plants in a field.

Farmers First is a nutrient recycling land application program that has served Minnesota’s east central farming community for the past 35 years. The program uses biosolids, a treated renewable soil amendment that replenishes valuable nutrients and organic matter back into depleted agricultural fields. This treatment improves soil health and increases crop yields.

The nutrient-rich fertilizer alternative is produced locally at the Empire Wastewater Treatment Plant and has several advantages over synthetic chemical and manure fertilizers. It is safe, natural, and a renewable resource that improves the environment, lowers wastewater treatment costs, and supports local farmers.

Counties, cities and townships served by the Farmers First program

  • Dakota County
  • Goodhue County
  • Mashan
  • Cannon Falls
  • City of Empire
  • City of Farmington
  • Douglas Township
  • Castle Rock
  • Randolph
  • Hampton
  • Rosemount
  • Eureka
  • New Trier
  • Miesville
  • Hastings
The Farmers First Program

About the Program

Farmers First is a free land application program offered by the Metropolitan Council to local east central Minnesota agricultural growers.

Biosolids Land Application

Biosolids, a renewable resource

Biosolids are produced by renewing recycled wastewater into nutrient-rich fertilizers that are later land applied to improve soil health and increase crop yields.

Quality and safety

Quality and safety

The biosolids produced for the Farmers First program undergo a rigorous set of treatment processes and testing procedures to ensure that they meet the highest quality and safety standards.

Become an MCES partner

MCES is accepting new landowner partners for spring and fall application seasons. Reach out to Colton Janes:
[email protected]