Livestock producers in areas impacted by drought may find some relief as the USDA Farm Service Agency approved the opening of additional Conservation Reserve Program (CRP) acres for haying or grazing. “States must adhere to specific guidelines to ensure that additional haying and grazing still maintains the important environmental and wildlife benefits of CRP,” said FSA Administrator Juan Garcia. With some states facing a multi-year drought, forage for livestock has been significantly reduced. This action allows land that is typically not eligible for emergency haying and grazing to be used while still protecting the environmental benefits of CRP. CRP is a voluntary program that provides producers annual rental payments on their land in exchange for planting resource-conserving vegetation on cropland to help prevent erosion, provide wildlife habitat and improve the environment.
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