The 101 about the Environmental Quality Incentives Program

Farmers are stewards of the land. Sometimes the stewards of the land need financial help to keep up with implementation of conservation practices. That is where the Environment Quality Incentives Program (EQIP) comes into play.

EQIP is a volunteer conservation program that supports production agriculture and environmental quality offered by the United States Department of Agricultural – Natural Resource Conservation Service (USDA-NRCS). They work with farmers to implement conservation practices on agricultural lands.

The financial program in Wisconsin offers to help offset the costs of the implementation of the farmer’s conservation practices. The incentive payments are made to encourage a farmer to adopt land management practices such as manure management, nutrient management, integrated pest management or wildlife habitat management.

Is your agricultural establishment eligible?

If you are a producer engaged in livestock or crop production you can apply for financial assistance. Land owners or renters with cropland, rangeland, pastures, private non-industrial forestland and other farm or ranch lands qualify to apply.

Where to start?

If you are interested in applying for EQIP, you should first develop a comprehensive nutrient management plan that meets all the NRCS technical standards.

Your next step will be to submit an application to your local National Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) office. From there, your application will be evaluated on the use of cost effective conservation practices and the benefit your plan will make to the environment.

If you are interested in learning more about EQIP, contact NRCS at your local USDA Service center or your local county land conservation department.

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