There are several Farm Bill Programs available to Orange County producers. The primary three are listed below. Contact us at 812-203-3033 for more information. Or stop by the office at 573 SE Main Street in Paoli to have a chat about your conservation needs.
Environmental Quality Incentives Program (EQIP)
The Environmental Quality Incentives Program (EQIP) is a voluntary conservation program that helps agricultural producers in a manner that promotes agricultural production and environmental quality as compatible goals. Through EQIP, farmers receive financial and technical assistance to implement structural and management conservation practices that optimize environmental benefits on working agricultural land. EQIP is open to all eligible agricultural producers without discrimination or bias.
EQIP applications are accepted through a continuous sign-up process. NRCS encourages customers to apply at any time and periodically announces cutoff dates when applications are ranked for funding. EQIP is open to all eligible ag producers.
You can find out more about EQIP in Indiana here: https://www.nrcs.usda.gov/wps/portal/nrcs/in/programs/financial/eqip
Conservation Stewardship Program (CSP)
The Conservation Stewardship Program (CSP) helps you build on your existing conservation efforts while strengthening your operation. Whether you are looking to improve grazing conditions, increases crop yields, or develop wildlife habitat, NRCS can custom design a CSP plan to help you meet those goals. We can help you schedule timely planting of cover crops, develop a grazing plan that will improve your forage base, implement no-till to reduce erosion or manage forested areas in a way that benefits wildlife habitat. If you are already taking steps to improve the condition of the land, chances are CSP can help you find new ways to meet your goals.
You can find out more about CSP and when/how to apply here: https://www.nrcs.usda.gov/wps/portal/nrcs/in/programs/financial/csp
Conservation Reserve Program (CRP)
The Conservation Reserve Program (CRP) provides technical and financial assistance to eligible farmers to address soil, water, and related natural resource concerns on their lands in an environmentally beneficial and cost-effective manner. The program provides assistance to farmers in complying with Federal and State laws, and encourages environmental enhancement. The program is funded through the Commodity Credit Corporation (CCC). The Farm Service Agency (FSA) administers CRP, and NRCS provides technical land eligibility determinations and conservation planning.
The Conservation Reserve Program reduces soil erosion, protects the Nation’s ability to produce food and fiber, reduces sedimentation in streams and lakes, improves water quality, establishes wildlife habitat, and enhances forest and wetland resources. CRP encourages farmers to convert highly erodible cropland or other environmentally sensitive acreage to vegetative cover, such as grass waterways, native grasses, wildlife plantings, trees, filter strips and riparian buffers. Farmers receive an annual rental payment for the term of the contract. Cost sharing is provided to establish the vegetative cover practices.
For more information, contact the Orange County FSA at 812-203-3032. Visit this website for more information: https://www.nrcs.usda.gov/wps/portal/nrcs/in/programs/conservation+reserve+program