The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) recently announced that incentive payments for certain practices will be increasing. For land enrolled in the Continuous Conservation Reserve Program (CRP), USDA’s Farm Service Agency (FSA) is adjusting the Practice Incentive Payment. The update increases the current five percent rate up to 20 percent for the installation of certain practices. Producers will also receive an additional 10 percent incentive payment for water quality practices implemented on lands enrolled in CRP’s continuous signup.
“The Conservation Reserve Program provides agricultural producers and landowners with a tool to conserve natural resources on their land that is less suitable for farming,” FSA Administrator Richard Fordyce said in a press release. “We offer a number of CRP initiatives, including continuous CRP, which greatly benefits natural resources like water. Increasing the incentive payment gives farmers even more reason to participate in continuous CRP, one of our nation’s largest conservation endeavors.”
Signups for the program can be done any time through FSA. The select incentive payments should make the program a bit more appealing for farmers and ranchers. Applications for continuous CRP are automatically accepted so long as the land and producer meet certain eligibility requirements. There are also enrollment levels established by the 2018 Farm Bill that dictate how many acres FSA is allowed to enroll in the CRP.
The CRP is administered by FSA on behalf of the Commodity Credit Corporation. The program is celebrating its 35-year anniversary this month and is one of the largest private-lands conservation programs in the country. Initially, the program was designed to focus on controlling soil erosion and taking areas of land out of production to help stabilize commodity prices. CRP has grown to include other areas of focus since it was first signed into law back in 1985. The successes of CRP initiatives are significant contributors to achieving the goals set forth in USDA’s Agriculture Innovation Agenda.