DeLong Company helps farmers benefit from climate program
A Midwestern grain and fertilizer business is helping farmers benefit from the Climate Smart Commodities program.
Dylan Vaca tells Brownfield the DeLong Company received a five-year 40-million dollar grant from the USDA under the program. Vaca says 98% of the money is passed through directly to farmers to promote sustainable farming practices. “Practices for farmers within our Grown Climate Smart program, the first practice being cover crops, and then we go into reduced or no-till, nutrient management plans, or windbreak establishiments or renovations to it.”
Vaca says growers can sign up for up for any or all of their four conservation practices, and they can stack the benefits to get paid more per acre. “For instance, the cover crops are at $50.00 an acre, the reduced or no-till is at $20.00 an acre, the nutrient management plans are at $19.00 an acre, and then the windbreaks are at $20.00 an acre as well.”
Vaca says farmers in eleven states are participating, and the payment rates are the same in each state. He says so far, the majority of the farmers in the program are in their home region of Illinois and Wisconsin, and most of them are stacking cover crop and no or reduced tillage benefits. He says corporate buyers of farm commodities are looking for products that are raised in environmentally friendly ways.
AUDIO: Dylan Vaca with the DeLong Company talks about the success they and many farmers are having with the USDA’s Climate Smart Commodities Program.