SPRINGFIELD – Farmers who planted cover crops this past fall are encouraged to submit an application to the Illinois Department of Agriculture (IDOA) to receive a discounted crop insurance rate in spring 2020, under the cover crop discount program promoted by State Senator Scott Bennett (D-Champaign).

This program allows eligible applicants to receive a $5 per acre premium discount on the following year’s crop insurance invoice for every acre of cover crop enrolled and verified in the program.

“Cover crops are an important part of preserving agriculture,” Bennett said. “As Senate Agriculture chair, I am encouraged by this program and that it represents another resource to farmers to help ensure the success of Illinois’ agriculture economy.”

IDOA worked with Senator Bennett and State Senator Andy Manar (D-Bunker Hill) to make this program possible. The goal of the program is to promote additional acres of cover crops that are not covered by other state or federal incentives. This is only applicable for those with coverage through the United States Department of Agriculture Risk Management Agency (USDA-RMA) crop insurance program.

“This program will help expand the ecological benefits of cover crops while supporting our local farmers’ bottom line. Prioritizing these best practices is why Illinois remains at the forefront of agricultural production and quality,” Manar said. 

“Implementation of best management practices such as cover crop applications continues to be a priority of the department,” said John Sullivan, IDOA Director. “Adopters of cover cropping methods may have incurred additional risk and expenses and this program serves as an incentive for their work.”

Applications are available at www2.illinois.gov/sites/agr/Pages/default.aspx and closes Jan. 15, 2020 for the premium discount. For more information, please contact IDOA at 217-782-6297.

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