Conservation Reserve Program Rental Rates Improved and Sign Up Deadlines AnnouncedJuly 1, 2021
PIERRE, S.D. – The USDA Farm Service Agency (FSA) recently updated rental rates and created new incentives for producers and landowners to enroll environmentally sensitive agricultural land into perennial cover for 10 to 15 years through the federally funded Conservation Reserve Program (CRP).
“CRP is a great alternative for producers,” said Kevin Robling, Secretary for South Dakota Game, Fish and Parks. “Enrolling land in CRP creates quality wildlife habitat and hunting opportunities which, in turn, strengthens our local economies as well as our state’s deep-rooted hunting heritage.”
Participants receive annual rental payments and 50 percent cost share to establish the perennial cover, which can be grasses or forbs to control soil erosion, improve water quality and develop wildlife habitat. There are options for haying and grazing in accordance with a conservation plan, but it could adjust payment amount.
“CRP has a proven track record of benefitting long-term soil health and improving water quality by reducing soil erosion and runoff. It can also increase profitability on marginal lands,” said Hunter Roberts, Secretary of the Department of Agriculture and Natural Resources. “It’s good for producers and for South Dakota’s natural resources.”
A cropping history of four out of six years from 2012 to 2017 is required to enroll cropland. Land currently enrolled, but expiring on Sept. 30, 2021, is also eligible to be re-enrolled this year. The deadline for the General CRP sign-up is July 23, 2021 and accepted offers will begin Oct. 1, 2021.
The non-competitive continuous CRP program is also an option for landowners and producers. If producers would like their contracts to begin by October 1 they will need to apply by August 6. It allows for the enrollment of buffer strips, wetland restoration, duck, pheasant, and pollinator habitat, prairie strips, windbreaks, shelterbelts, and marginal pastureland buffers. There is no sign-up deadline for new enrollments in continuous CRP and it is eligible for additional payment incentives and up to 100% cost-share for establishing perennial cover.
“This is a very short window of time for South Dakota producers and landowners to enroll. The time to reach out to your local FSA offices is now to see if any of these CRP programs will work within your farm or ranch operation. Thank you in advance for considering this opportunity and for being stewards of South Dakota’s water, land and wildlife resources.” Robling concluded.Individuals looking for more information on CRP can contact their local USDA Service Center or Habitat Advisor with any questions about how CRP on their operation.
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