Environmental Quality Incentives Program (EQIP) Support for Organic Growers
The Environmental Quality Incentives Program (EQIP) offers financial and technical help to assist eligible participants install or implement structural and management conservation practices on eligible agricultural land. In addition, the 2008 Farm Bill included specific provisions for use of EQIP to provide assistance for organic growers to implement conservation practices consistent with organic production per the National Organic Program (NOP) requirements.
General EQIP Organic Initiative Information
Through the EQIP Organic Initiative, the Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) provides assistance to eligible producers for installation of conservation practices on organic or agricultural operations transitioning to organic production. Eligible producers include those who agree to develop and carry out an organic system plan (OSP), or develop and implement conservation practices for certified organic production that are consistent with an OSP.
The assistance from the Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) through the EQIP program helps producers plan and implement conservation practices to achieve increased conservation benefits on their operations. EQIP is primarily used to provide financial and technical assistance to implement conservation practices to address soil, water, air, plant, animal, and energy resources.
A new organic provision targets organic producers and producers transitioning to organic production:
Assistance is for conservation practices related to organic production
Assistance is limited to $20,000 per year and $80,000 during a six year period
Producers are required to develop and carry out an Organic System Plan (OSP) or carry out practices consistent with an OSP
Technical and Support Information for EQIP and Other NRCS Organic Activities
Applications for the EQIP Organic Initiative are accepted on a continuous basis throughout the year. Please continue to work with the staff at your local NRCS office to submit applications for an opportunity to participate in the fiscal year 2012 Initiative.