Farmers and ranchers may apply to enroll grasslands in the Conservation Reserve Program (CRP) Grasslands signup through May 26.
The Grassland Conservation Reserve Program (CRP) is part of the CRP program, a federally funded voluntary program that contracts with agricultural producers so that environmentally sensitive agricultural land is not farmed or ranched, but instead used for conservation benefits. FSA provides participants with rental payments and cost-share assistance. Contract duration is 10 or 15 years. Grassland CRP helps landowners and operators protect grassland, including rangeland, and pastureland, and certain other lands, while maintaining the areas as grazing lands.
The program emphasizes support for grazing operations, plant and animal biodiversity, and grassland and land containing shrubs and forbs under the greatest threat of conversion. Grassland CRP is reauthorized by the 2018 Farm Bill.
For more information on the CRP Grasslands program, see the USDA fact sheet. The National Sustainable Agriculture Coalition also has this post with more background on the program.
To enroll in the CRP Grasslands signup, producers and landowners should contact their local USDA Service Center by the May 26 deadline.