Conservation Reserve Program (CRP) sign-up deadline June 14

The deadline to enroll land into the Farm Service Agency's general Conservation Reserve Program (CRP) signup is Friday, June 14.

"Individuals who are interested in signing up should come into our office now," said Julie Vulk, county executive director for the Winneshiek County FSA office.

"Soil rental rates have increased, producers with expiring contracts have seen significant increases in rates when bidding to re-enroll."

Interested participants are encouraged to contact the Winneshiek County FSA office to begin the signup process or to complete it. Offers must be completed in their entirety by the end of signup June 14 in order to be considered eligible.

"Making offers for enrollment into this program takes time, so we want to make sure everyone who wants to enroll into this program has the opportunity, so producers need to allow themselves adequate time before signup ends," added Vulk.

Following signup, all offers for CRP will be evaluated and ranked using an Environmental Benefits Index (EBI) for the environmental benefits to be gained from enrolling the land in CRP. The EBI consists of five environmental factors (wildlife, water, soil, air and enduring benefits) and a cost factor. Decisions on the EBI cutoff will be made after the signup ends and after analyzing the EBI data of all the offers.

CRP is the largest voluntary private-land conservation program. It helps farmers, ranchers and other agricultural producers use their environmentally sensitive land for conservation purposes. In return for offering the land, the Farm Service Agency provides participants rental payments, and cost share on behalf of the Commodity Credit Corporation.

For more information on CRP, contact the Winneshiek County FSA office or the website at fsa.usda.gov.