Chris Thompson was named Conservationist of the Year Award for Bulloch County by the Ogeechee River Soil and Water Conservation District and the Farmers & Merchants Bank.
The Ogeechee River SWCD, which is made up of Bulloch, Candler, Effingham, Evans, Screven and Tattnall Counties, played host recently to the 59th Annual Awards Banquet. Each year, the group recognizes an individual that has made an outstanding contribution to soil and water conservation.
Thompson and his wife Jamie have a 3-year-old daughter named Bo.
Thompson grew up in Bulloch County and began farming with his grandfather Dandy Thompson and his uncle Bobby Thompson in the summer he turned 13. He continued until he graduated from Southeast Bulloch High School.
After graduation he worked farming with Bobby and Christopher Williams for 6 years. In 1998 he started contract farming. In 2001 Thompson stopped contract farming and began farming on his own.
Currently, Thompson farms approximately 2,300 acres in Bulloch, Screven and Effingham Counties. He grows cotton, peanuts, corn and soybeans.
Thompson said he is dedicated to conservation. All of his crops are strip tilled except for a small portion of his peanuts. Last year he adopted grid sampling and site specific fertilizer application through GPS. The process reduces the over-fertilization of land by only applying fertilizer where needed.
His high boy is equipped with rate control so the exact amounts of chemicals needed are put out. Thompson utilizes low pressure sprinkler packages on drops on all irrigation systems to reduce evaporation. He also recycles his engine lubricants from his tractors.
Thompson has participated in the SE Georgia Ag-Water Conservation Initiative Program or Pond Program and is also a participant in the Natural Resource Conservation Services Conservation Stewardship Program.
When asked about the award, Thompson said that he was only doing his job.
Bulloch County supervisors Fred G. Blitch, Jr. and Charles Finch and NRCS personnel Jason Gatch and Glyn Thrift said Thompson was an excellent choice for the award.