(Manhattan, Kansas)– U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Farm Service Agency (FSA) State Executive Director David Schemm Thursday announced that 43 Kansas counties are authorized for emergency haying and grazing use of Conservation Reserve Program (CRP) acres for the remainder of fiscal year 2018, which runs through September 30. A map of authorized counties can be found on the Kansas FSA webpage, www.fsa.usda.gov/ks.
Local FSA county committees in these counties designated as D2 (severe drought) level on the U.S. Drought Monitor have requested and been approved by the Kansas FSA State Committee for emergency hay/graze beginning July 16. The emergency grazing period for these counties will end September 30, 2018. The emergency haying authorizations ends 30 calendar days from the authorization date, not to exceed August 15, 2018. No haying or grazing can occur prior to July 16, 2018. CRP practices eligible currently do NOT include CP25.
“Kansas FSA is dedicated to helping our producers when they face challenging situations like the drought Kansas is currently experiencing. By authorizing the release of these CRP acres, we can give producers access to desperately needed forage and grazing,” said SED Schemm. “Eligible producers who are interested in emergency haying and grazing of CRP must request approval through their local FSA before haying and grazing eligible acreage and obtain a modified conservation plan from the NRCS that includes haying and grazing provisions. Current provisions allow grazing on up to 100 percent of a field based upon the forage management plan developed by NRCS and up to 75 percent stocking rate,” Schemm added.
There will be no CRP annual rental payment reduction for 2018 emergency haying and grazing authorizations. To take advantage of the emergency grazing provisions, authorized producers can use the CRP acreage for their own livestock or may grant another livestock producer use of the CRP acreage. The eligible CRP acreage is limited to acres located within the approved county.
In counties that are authorized for emergency haying and grazing, producers are reminded that the same CRP acreage cannot be both hayed and/or grazed at the same time. For example, if 50 percent of a field or contiguous field is hayed, the remaining unhayed 50 percent cannot be grazed; it must remain unhayed and ungrazed for wildlife. In addition, participants are limited to one hay cutting and are not permitted to sell any of the hay.
For more information and to request approval for emergency haying or grazing use of CRP acres, producers should contact their local county FSA office. Contact information can be found online at http://offices.usda.gov.