Minnesota Program Offers Growers Diverse Cover Crop Incentives

Growers in four Economic and Environmental Clusters of Opportunity, or EECOs, in Minnesota, or in Tribal Nations, are eligible for financial and technical assistance to plant cover crops of Kernza® perennial grain, winter camelina, winter barley, or hybrid winter rye. Growers who take part in the Forever Green EECO Implementation Program are eligible for conservation (or “ecosystem service”) payments ranging from $20 to $50 per acre, as well as a risk management payment that will cover up to half the cost of production in the event of crop or market failure. Growers who are located in Drinking Water Supply Management Areas are eligible for a 25% premium on their ecosystem service payment. The EECO program is a partnership between the University of Minnesota Forever Green Initiative and the Minnesota Department of Agriculture, with funding from the State of Minnesota’s Clean Water Fund.