Ford County has been authorized for emergency haying and grazing of  Conservation Reserve Program acres for the fiscal year through Sept. 30.

According to U.S. Department of Agriculture Farm Service Agency Executive Director Rebecca L Merkle, "Eligible producers who are interested in emergency haying and grazing of CRP must request approval before haying and grazing eligible acreage and must obtain a modified conservation plan from the Natural Resources Conservation Service that includes haying and grazing provisions.

"Current provisions allow grazing on 100 percent of a field, up to the 75 percent stocking rate."

For 2018 emergency haying and grazing authorizations, there will be no CRP annual rental payment reduction.

Authorized producers can use the CRP acreage for their own livestock or may grant another livestock producer use of the CRP acreage to take advantage of the emergency grazing provisions.

There will be a limit to acres located within the approved county for eligible CRP acreage.

Producers are reminded that the same CRP acreage cannot be both hayed and/or grazed at the same time in counties that are authorized for emergency haying and grazing.

If 50 percent of a field or contiguous field is hayed, the remaining un-hayed 50 percent cannot be grazed; it must remain un-hayed and un-grazed for wildlife, for example.

Those who participate will be limited to one hay cutting and will not be permitted to the sale of any hay as well.

Contact the Ford County FSA office at 620-227-3731, for more information and to request approval for emergency haying or grazing use of CRP acres.

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