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News Release

Time Is Running Out to Renew Conservation Stewardship Program Contracts for Five More Years

Julie MacSwain

ST PAUL, MINN, August 26, 2014 — Back in 2010, 1,587 Minnesota farmers were the first in the state to enroll in the then-new USDA Conservation Stewardship Program.   Since those five-year contracts are coming to an end, these pioneer enrollees may now renew their contracts, adding more conservation activities to improve natural resources.  Contracts may be renewed until Sept. 12 this year, to extend payments through 2019.

CSP is offered by the USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service and is the Farm Bill program that helps farmers and woodland owners take conservation to the next level. The program provides payment opportunities for farmers who are already established conservation stewards, helping them improve water quality, soil health and wildlife habitat.

“CSP farmers in Minnesota are conservation leaders and go the extra mile to conserve our nation’s resources,” NRCS State Conservationist Don Baloun said. “The 2014 Farm Bill continued that strong commitment and heightened the program’s focus on generating conservation benefits.”

Since CSP began in 2010, more than 3,300 producers in Minnesota have enrolled over 2.4 million acres in the program.  CSP participants boost their operations’ conservation benefits by installing new conservation activities that improve soil health, water quality, and wildlife habitat.

“This program allows landowners to reach the next level of conservation and opens the door to trying out new conservation activities,” Baloun said.

To apply now for CSP, or to learn about technical and financial assistance available through NRCS, visit, the Conservation Stewardship webpageor local USDA service center. For more on the 2014 Farm Bill, visit


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