Skyrocketing Support for RCPP in Missouri

Nov 30, 2015
Blake Gerard
Blake Gerard
COLUMBIA, MO – The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Regional Conservation Partnership Program (RCPP) project, Sustaining the Future of Rice, recently received further affirmation of its popularity among growers when the November 20 EQIP application deadline for Louisiana and Missouri saw more than 260 applications submitted across 63,800 acres for Missouri alone!  

The project is sponsored by USA Rice and Ducks Unlimited through their Rice Stewardship Partnership, along with more than forty supporting partners.  Covering the six major rice-growing states, the project has been dubbed the “National Rice RCPP project,” funding approximately $10 million worth of conservation improvements on ricelands using the Natural Resources Conservation Service’s Environmental Quality Incentives Program (EQIP) and the Conservation Stewardship Program (CSP).

Project implementation began earlier this fall with more than 300 EQIP applications collected in Arkansas and Mississippi.  The tremendous turnout in Missouri applications comes following the first Rice Conservation Field Day in Portageville earlier this month.

Blake Gerard, Missouri rice farmer and chairman of USA Rice Farmers, said, “The application numbers are overwhelming.  Although everything can’t be funded, I think it speaks volumes about the demand for conservation funding to see hundreds of applications come out of only seven counties in our state.”

Gerard added, “Rice farmers in Missouri are looking forward to working with USA Rice and Ducks Unlimited throughout the coming years to continue funding these environmentally and economically beneficial projects on their operations.”

An EQIP application period for California and Texas will be announced later this winter.  The planning process is currently underway and applications for CSP will be announced in late 2016.