Farmers For Soil Health opens financial, technical assistance for cover crop adopters
Corn and soybean farmers in 20 states who adopt cover crop practices are now eligible for financial and technical assistance.
Cost-share programs are available through Farmers For Soil Health and USDA’s Partnership for Climate-Smart Commodities and US Fish and Wildlife Foundation, which provide $50 per acre over three years of new cover crops planted.
Farmers for Soil Heath Executive Director Ben West tells Brownfield the funds will help growers offset some risk. “We know through research that cover crops gives farmers and farms a lot of benefits, but through the first three years, their can be a learning curve.”
For example, he says, “ If not established and terminated correctly, if not managed correctly, can result in yield loss or crop failure. It sometimes takes a year or two for farmers to figure that out.”
And, West says, he hopes the initiative will create more demand. “Cover crops across the US has a fairly low adoption rate of 6 to 8 percent.”
Delaware, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Maryland, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska, New York, North Carolina, North Dakota, Ohio, Pennsylvania, South Dakota, Tennessee, Virginia and Wisconsin are eligible for enrollment at farmersforsoilhealth.com.
Farmers For Soil Health is a farmer-led initiative created by the National Pork Board, National Corn Growers Association and the United Soybean Board.
Best West, Executive Director with Farmers For Soil Health: