4R nutrient stewardship promotes the achievement of social, economic and environmental goals. 

Some commonly identified grower objectives that promote the sustainable nature of 4R nutrient stewardship include the following:

Economic Goals

  • Improve net farm income.
  • Contribute to improved regional economic development.

Social Goals

  • Improve the quality of farm family housing, diet and education.
  • Improve productivity of farm labor by appropriate use of emerging technologies that increase efficiencies of field operations and reduce costs per unit of crop harvested.
  • Improve access to sources of information to assist in farm management decision making.

Environmental Goals

  • Maintain or reduce unwanted losses of nutrients to the environment:
    • Reduce soil erosion of nutrient containing soil particles;
    • Reduce volatile ammonia (NH3) emissions;
    • Reduce nitrification / de-nitrification losses of nitrous oxide (N2O) and di-nitrogen (N2).
  • Reduce energy use per harvested unit of farm production.
  • Improve recycling of crop nutrients from crop residues and livestock manures.