The program gives farmers and landowners who plant fall cover crops, like rye and oats, the opportunity to apply for a
"Planting cover crops is a great way for farmers to build upon existing conservation efforts in their farming operations," said Secretary Naig. "Every field is different so I encourage farmers and landowners to talk to their agronomist, conservation professional, or seed representative to determine which varieties of cover crops may work best for their growing conditions. I hope everyone will consider planting cover crops on at least one field this fall."
Farmers and landowners can start enrolling in the cover crop insurance discount program in December.
To qualify, the cover crop acres cannot be enrolled in other state or
Cover crops help improve soil health, prevent soil erosion and lock in nutrients, especially during extreme weather events. Cover crops are proven to reduce nitrogen loads by 28 to 31 percent and phosphorous loads by 29 percent, which helps improve water quality. They also offer weed control and livestock grazing benefits for producers.
This is the fifth year the crop insurance discount program is being administered by the
To date, about 1,700 farmers have enrolled nearly 700,000 acres of cover crops in the program. Other states have also started offering similar programs modeled after the one in
Some insurance policies may be excluded, like Whole-Farm Revenue Protection, or those covered through written agreements. Participants must follow all existing farming practices required by their policy and work with their insurance agencies to maintain eligibility.
Farmers should visit their local