The Idaho NRCS announced that farmers involved in organic production may qualify for funds to start conservation practices related to organic agriculture through the Environmental Quality Incentives Program (EQIP). NRCS is encouraging producers to apply for the EQIP “Organic Initiative” by March 4, 2011 to be considered for this year’s funds. Both current producers who are certified organic and producers currently transitioning to organic production are eligible to apply.
Producers are also required to develop and carry out an Organic System Plan. These plans must be approved by the Idaho Department of Agriculture or a USDA accredited certifier. Applicants with certified organic operations must submit a copy of their current Organic System Plan. Transitioning producers must submit a self-certification letter agreeing to develop and implement an organic system plan.
Some examples of conservation practices that may benefit organic producers include conservation crop rotation, cover crops, and nutrient and pest management.
You can find out more about the Organic Initiative and apply for the program by clicking here.