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NRCS Announces EQIP Drought “COVER CROP” Signup in Minnesota

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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Date: August 2, 2012

Contact
Julie MacSwain, State Public Affairs Specialist, (651) 602-7859

 

ST PAUL, MN,  August 2, 2012� Minnesota NRCS State Conservationist Don Baloun has announced an Environmental Quality Incentives Program (EQIP) signup for producers in Minnesota impacted by the summer of 2012 drought.

USDA-NRCS will provide funding to producers to plant cover crops through EQIP. “This announcement is in response to the USDA Secretary Announcement on July 23, 2012 and NRCS’ understanding of the heavy loss of hay and forage impacting livestock producers in Minnesota,” said Baloun.

Minnesota NRCS is allocating $400k for a special EQIP sign-up that will take place from August 6th through 10th, 2012. The sign-up will focus on the planting of cover crops for supplemental livestock feed and erosion control. The focus area will be in the severely affected drought counties in southern and NW Minnesota. The counties included in the signup are: Beltrami, Blue Earth, Clay, Cottonwood, Faribault, Fillmore, Freeborn, Houston, Jackson, Lac Qui Parle, Lake of the Woods, Lincoln, Lyon, Mahnomen, Martin, Marshall, Mower, Murray, Nobles, Norman, Pennington, Pipestone, Polk, Red Lake, Redwood, Rock, Watonwan and Yellow Medicine. Producers interested in obtaining financial assistance for cover crops are encouraged to stop by their local USDA NRCS office.

Funding priority will be given to livestock producers needing supplemental feed and forage. Should funding allow producers wanting to plant cover crops for erosion control will be considered for funding. “Planting of cover crops in Minnesota not only provides supplemental feed for livestock operators but also provides erosion control protection,” said Baloun.

Producers may seek financial and technical assistance through the Environmental Quality Incentives Program (EQIP). EQIP provides technical and financial help to landowners plan and apply conservation practices that protect soil and water quality.

For more information about EQIP visit the Minnesota NRCS website at www.mn.nrcs.usda.gov

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