Conservation Reserve Program (CRP)

What is it: 

The Conservation Reserve Program (CRP) is a land conservation program administered by the Farm Service Agency (FSA). In exchange for a yearly rental payment, farmers enrolled in the program agree to remove environmentally sensitive land from agricultural production and plant species that will improve environmental health and quality. Contracts for land enrolled in CRP are 10-15 years in length. The long-term goal of the program is to re-establish valuable land cover to help improve water quality, prevent soil erosion, and reduce loss of wildlife habitat. If you would like to watch an informational video on CRP, please click here.

Signed into law by President Ronald Reagan in 1985, CRP is the largest private-lands conservation program in the United States. Thanks to voluntary participation by farmers and land owners, CRP has improved water quality, reduced soil erosion, and increased habitat for endangered and threatened species. For success stories, click here

Current CRP Initiatives
  • Bottomland Hardwoods Initiative
  • Duck Habitat Initiative
  • Floodplain Wetland Initiative
  • Highly Erodible Land Initiative
  • Honeybee Habitat Initiative
  • Longleaf Pine Initiative
  • Non-Floodplain and Playa Lakes Wetland Initiative
  • Pollinator Habitat Initiative
  • State Acres for Wildlife Enhancement (SAFE) Initiative
  • Upland Bird Habitat Initiative
Where is it used: 

Am I eligible?

To be eligible for CRP enrollment, a farmer must have owned or operated the land for at least 12 months prior the previous CRP sign-up period. Exceptions to this rule include:

  • Land acquired by the new owner due to the previous owner's death;
  • Change in ownership due to foreclosure; or
  • Land that was purchased by the new owner without the sole intention of placing it in CRP.

Land Eligibility

To be eligible for placement in CRP, land must be either: Cropland (including field margins) that is planted to an agricultural commodity 4 of the previous 6 crop years from 2008 to 2013, and which is physically and legally capable of being planted in a normal manner to an agricultural commodity; or Certain marginal pastureland that is suitable for use as a riparian buffer or for similar water quality purposes.

Who do I contact in Ohio: 

The CRP program has many components and conservation options and it is best to investigate at the Farm Service Agency Website for the program or visit your local FSA office.