SOWAP (SOil and WAter Protection) represents a collaborative attempt by industry, NGOs, academic institutions and farmers to address the environmental, economic and social concerns arising from the practice of conventional agriculture.
Working in the UK, Belgium, Hungary and the Czech Republic over the last three years, SOWAP tested a range of site-specific soil management methods, based on the concept of conservation tillage. It looked at the economics of the operations as well as effects on soil erosion and pesticide and fertiliser run-off.
Birds, earthworms and aquatic invertebrates are some of the biodiversity indicators the project measured.
The demonstration and dissemination of information is of key importance to the SOWAP project, which ended in September 2006.