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Conservation Reserve Program

About the Conservation Reserve Program (CRP)

Thumbnail image depicting Bumblebee

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 from 10 to15 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.

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

In addition to General CRP, there are other CRP enrollment opportunities such as Grassland CRP and Continuous CRP (which includes CLEAR30, State Acres For Wildlife Enhancement (SAFE), Conservation Reserve Enhancement Program, and Farmable Wetlands Program)

Important Update
The USDA will allow agricultural producers and landowners to request voluntary termination of their expiring CRP contract following the end of the primary nesting season. Producers approved for voluntary termination will not have to repay rental payments, a change this year to help to boost production to mitigate impacts from the Ukraine invasion. FSA is mailing letters to producers with expiring acres that detail this flexibility as well as share other options, such as re-enrolling sensitive acres in the CRP Continuous signup and considering growing organic. Read more in our May 26 news release.

2022 Signups

The signup for CLEAR30 runs from April 1 to Aug. 5, 2022. Read more in our CLEAR30 signup news release.

The Continuous CRP Signup is ongoing

The General CRP signup ran from Jan. 31, 2022 to March 11, 2022. USDA is accepting more than 2 million acres in offers through this year’s signup; read more in our May 3 General CRP signup news release. 

The Grassland CRP signup ran from April 4, 2022 to May 13, 2022; More than 3.1 million acres are being accepted from agricultural producers and private landowners in this year's signup - the highest in history. Read more in our July 12 Grassland CRP signup news release.

Producers interested in enrolling in CRP should contact the FSA office at their local USDA Service Center 

2022 Enrollment

The General CRP signup ran from Jan. 31, 2022 to March 11, 2022. USDA is accepting more than 2 million acres in offers through this year’s signup; read more in our May 3 General CRP signup news release.

Improvements to CRP

In 2021, FSA introduced higher payment rates, new incentives, and a more targeted focus on CRP’s role in climate change mitigation. To learn more about updates to CRP, read our “What’s New with CRP” fact sheet or our April 21, 2021 news release.

FSA has also renewed its emphasis on its partnership programs, including CREP. This includes hiring additional staff and working to improve the flexibility of the program. Read our December 20, 2021 news release.

CRP and Climate Mitigation

Through the CRP Climate Change Mitigation Assessment Initiative, FSA will further quantify program benefits to better target CRP toward climate outcomes and improve existing models and conservation planning tools.

In October 2021, USDA awarded a total of $10 million to three partners that will monitor and measure how key CRP practices impact soil carbon. These practices include perennial grasses, tree plantings and wetlands. 

To learn more, read the October 12, 2021 news release, May 25, 2021 news release or visit our page on CRP Monitoring, Assessment and Evaluation projects.


CRP Resources