FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE Contact: Stuart A. Lee
Date: December 14, 2010
Raleigh, NC –North Carolina organic producers and those transitioning to organic farming have until March 4, 2011 to sign up for the Environmental Quality Incentives Program (EQIP) Organic Initiative. The USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) administers the initiative. Under the EQIP Organic Initiative, approved applicants can receive up to $20,000 per year or $80,000 over six years.
A number of "core" organic conservation practices may be funded through the initiative including cover crops, conservation crop rotation, prescribed grazing, pest management and nutrient management. All conservation practices offered under "general" EQIP are also available through the EQIP Organic Initiative including but not limited to fence and watering facilities for rotational grazing, erosion control practices, field borders, etc.
Applicants who are currently certified organic will need to include their organic system plan (OSP) reviewed by a USDA accredited organic certifier when applying for financial assistance in the EQIP Organic Initiative. Applicants who are transitioning to organic will need to submit a self-certification form to the NRCS acknowledging that agree to develop and implement conservation practices for certified organic production that are consistent with an organic system plan. The self-certification form may be obtained at time of application from any NRCS Service Center.
For more information on NRCS, programs and the EQIP Organic Initiative contact your local field office or visit us on the Web at www.nc.nrcs.usda.gov.