NRCS accepting 2019 agricultural funding applications by Oct. 19

Agricultural producers are encouraged to apply for resources to improve and enhance their farm and forest land.

The National Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) is accepting applications for financial and technical assistance.

Funding through the Environmental Quality Incentives Program (EQIP) and Agricultural Management Assistance (AMA) program administered by NRCS is available.

The first application cut-off date for 2019 funding is Oct. 19.

The assistance can help farmers and forest landowners plan and implement conservation practices to improve water and air quality, build healthier soil, improve grazing and forest lands, conserve energy, enhance organic operations, and achieve other environmental benefits, according to a release from NRCS.

NRCS offers incentives through EQIP including:

¯ on-farm energy initiative — helps producers conserve energy on their operations;

¯ seasonal high tunnel initiative — helps producers install high tunnels designed to extend the growing season into the cold months, increase productivity, keep plants at a steady temperature, and conserve water and energy; and

¯ organic initiative — helps producers develop a conservation plan on their land to identify concerns and opportunities, objectives, and solutions.

“Our high-quality comprehensive conservation plans can provide farmers with soluth step-by-step recommendations they can use to improve their water quality, soil health, and more — all while reducing input costs,” NRCS State Conservationist Denise Coleman said.

“Pennsylvania producers with applications in before Oct. 19, 2018, will have a higher chance of application approval as funding is limited,” according to the release.

Those interested in applying may visit www.pa.nrcs.usda.gov for applications and program information or offices.sc.egov.usda.gov to find the service centers in their area.