What is the Conservation Reserve Program (CRP)?

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The Conservation Reserve Program (CRP) is a land conservation program administered by the Farm Service Agency (FSA). In exchange for a yearly rental payment, farmers enrolled in the program agree to remove environmentally sensitive land from agricultural production and plant species that will improve environmental health and quality. Contracts for land enrolled in CRP are 10-15 years in length. The long-term goal of the program is to re-establish valuable land cover to help improve water quality, prevent soil erosion, and reduce loss of wildlife habitat. If you would like to watch an informational video on CRP, please click here

 
Why is CRP important?

Signed into law by President Ronald Reagan in 1985, CRP is the largest private-lands conservation program in the United States. Thanks to voluntary participation by farmers and land owners, CRP has improved water quality, reduced soil erosion, and increased habitat for endangered and threatened species

 

If you are looking to enroll in CRP, here is what you need to know:

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To access the USDA Informational CRP video‘Silver Lining’ please click this link. 


How do I enroll? 

Participants can enroll in CRP in two ways. The first is through a competitive process known as CRP General Sign-up. General CRP sign-ups are announced on a periodic basis by the Secretary of Agriculture; they do not occur according to any fixed schedule. The second way to enroll is through CRP Continuous Sign-up which offers on a continuous basis. All enrollment offers are processed through your local FSA office


Eligibility

Am I eligible?

To be eligible for CRP enrollment, a farmer must have owned or operated the land for at least 12 months prior the previous CRP sign-up period. Exceptions to this rule include:

  • Land acquired by the new owner due to the previous owner's death;
  • Change in ownership due to foreclosure; or
  • Land that was purchased by the new owner without the sole intention of placing it in CRP. 

Land Eligibility

To be eligible for placement in CRP, land must be either: Cropland (including field margins) that is planted to an agricultural commodity 4 of the previous 6 crop years from 2008 to 2013, and which is physically and legally capable of being planted in a normal manner to an agricultural commodity; or Certain marginal pastureland that is suitable for use as a riparian buffer or for similar water quality purposes. 

The land must be eligible and suitable for any of the following conservation practices:

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Buffers for Wildlife Habitat
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Wetlands Buffer
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Riparian Buffer

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Wetland Restoration
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Filter Strips
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Grass Waterways

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Shelter Belts
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Living Snow Fences
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Contour Grass
Strips

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Salt Tolerant Vegetation
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Shallow water areas for Wildlife

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