Registration deadline set for Feb. 28 for general CRP (Keeping the Farm)
(Editor’s note: Nivin A. Elgohary is the state executive director for Farm Service Agency, Virginia.)
Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue recently announced the USDA opened registration for the Conservation Reserve Program on Dec. 9.
The deadline for agricultural producers to sign up for general CRP is Feb 28 while signups for continuous CRP is ongoing.
Farmers and ranchers who enroll in CRP receive a yearly rental payment for voluntarily establishing long-term, resource-conserving plant species, such as approved grasses or trees (known as “covers”) to control soil erosion, improve water quality and develop wildlife habitat on marginally productive agricultural lands.
“The Conservation Reserve Program is one of our nation’s largest conservation endeavors and a critical tool to help producers better manage their operations while conserving natural resources,” Perdue said. “The program marks its 35-year anniversary in 2020, and we’re hoping to see one of our largest signups in many years.”
CRP has 22 million acres enrolled, but the 2018 Farm Bill lifted the cap to 27 million acres.
This means farmers and ranchers have a chance to enroll in CRP for the first time or continue their participation for another term.
Signed into law in 1985, CRP is one of the largest private-lands conservation programs in the United States.
The program was originally primarily intended to control soil erosion and potentially stabilize commodity prices by taking marginal lands out of production.
This Farm Bill program has evolved over the years, providing a variety of conservation and economic benefits from coast to coast.
CRP Enrollment Options
• General Signup: CRP general signup will be held annually and is currently open for signup through Feb. 28.
• Continuous Signup: CRP continuous signup will focus primarily on water quality within the Clean Lakes, Estuaries and Rivers Initiative.
The 2018 Farm Bill prioritizes water quality practices such as contour grass strips, filter strips, riparian buffers, wetlands and a new prairie strip.
Virginia has also reopened signups for the Conservation Reserve Enhancement Program. CREP will continue to target high-priority local, state or regional conservation concerns.
Contact a local FSA office for more information or to submit an offer for enrollment.
1-800-634-5021 410-822-3965 Fax- 410-822-5068
P.O. Box 2026 Easton, MD 21601-8925