Iowa Secretary of Agriculture Mike Naig today extended the deadline to apply for the Crop Insurance Discount Program for cover crops to Jan. 27. Farmers who planted fall cover crops in 2022 can apply to receive $5 per acre discount on their 2023 crop insurance premiums.
“Cover crops offer many agronomic benefits to farmers and landowners while also helping to improve water quality,” said Secretary Naig. “At a time when crop input costs continue to rise, this innovative program will save farmers money while also providing improved water quality for Iowans and those downstream.”
In its sixth year, the program has helped increase cover crop acreage across the state and has been replicated in other Midwest states. Iowa has approximately three million acres of cover crops, a conservation practice that improves soil structure, enhances permeability and holds phosphorus and nitrogen in place.
Farmers and landowners may signup online before Jan. 27 at apply.cleanwateriowa.org.
The Crop Insurance Discount Program is jointly administered by the Iowa Department of Agriculture and Land Stewardship and United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) Risk Management Agency (RMA). Iowa’s program has served as a model and has been replicated by the USDA as well as Wisconsin, Illinois and Indiana.
To qualify for the Crop Insurance Discount Program, the cover crop acres cannot be enrolled in other state or federal cost share programs. Farmers should visit the local USDA service center to learn about other cost share funding available to support the implementation of conservation practices. Some insurance policies, such as Whole-Farm Revenue Protection or those covered through written agreements, may be excluded. Participants must follow all existing farming practices required by their respective policy and work with their insurance agencies to maintain eligibility.