USDA NRCS OFFERS FUNDING TO NEW YORK ORGANIC PRODUCERS State Conservationist, Astor Boozer announced that $775,000 in funding is available to help New York organic producers and transitioning producers implement soil and water conservation practices on th
GardenNews.biz - Jan 04,2011 - USDA NRCS OFFERS FUNDING TO NEW YORK ORGANIC PRODUCERS
Syracuse, N. Y., Jan. 3, 2011–State Conservationist, Astor Boozer announced that $775,000 in funding is available to help New York organic producers and transitioning producers implement soil and water conservation practices on their agricultural operations. Applications are accepted on a continuous basis, with the funding cutoff date set for March 4, 2011.
“Under the Organic Initiative and over the past three years, New York producers have used funding to plant cover crops, establish grazing systems, and implement nutrient management systems consistent with organic certification standards,” said Boozer. “Last year, NRCS New York funded more than $1 million through the Organic Initiative to help producers implement conservation practices.”
Eligible producers include those certified through USDA’s National Organic Program, those transitioning to certified organic production, and those who meet organic standards but are exempt from certification because their gross annual organic sales are less than $5,000. Under Organic Initiative contract, producers are paid a practice payment rate for each implemented practice. Beginning, limited resource, and socially disadvantaged producers are paid at a higher practice payment rate. The program provides up to $20,000 a year per person or legal entity, with a maximum total of $80,000 over six years.
The 2008 Farm Bill provided for assistance specifically for organic farm operations and those transitioning to organic production. Organic Initiative funding is provided through the Environmental Quality Incentives Program (EQIP), a voluntary conservation program administered by USDA’s Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) that promotes agricultural production and environmental quality.
Producers interested in applying must submit applications through their local USDA Service Center, which can be located online at http://offices.sc.egov.usda.gov/locator/app?state=NY.
Additional information is available online at www.nrcs.usda.gov. NRCS is an Equal Opportunity Employer and Provider.