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The USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) has funding available to help Nebraska’s farmers control erosion on their cropland. This funding is available through the Ephemeral Gully Control Initiative under the Environmental Quality Incentives Program. Eligible producers have until July 13, 2020, to apply. 

Controlling erosion is especially important for recipients of USDA program benefits – like federal crop insurance subsidies and conservation program payments. USDA program participants are required to control erosion on all cropland determined to be highly erodible. The funding available through this special initiative can help farmers meet that requirement.

Nebraska State Conservationist Craig Derickson said, “Conservation practices such as cover crops and grassed waterways are good solutions for controlling ephemeral gullies, which is required by conservation compliance provisions.” 

According to NRCS, over the last couple decades, there has been a continual decrease in grassed waterways and terraces being used. On some fields, this has led to increased erosion and ephemeral gullies.

Derickson said, “Ephemeral gullies are those rough spots where water concentrates and causes soil to wash away, creating small ditches. While the damage to cropland appears to be small, if not controlled, the negative impacts like loss of inputs, decreased soil health and yields can be significant. Plus, it can cause farmers to be out of compliance with USDA’s Food Security Act requirements.”

For more information, and to apply for funding through this special initiative, contact NRCS before July 13. Due to the on-going COVID-19 public health situation, producers are encouraged to call local offices to set up an appointment with NRCS staff over the phone.

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Thank you for submitting your organic certification application! OCIA looks forward to working with you.

For applicants who are new or currently under suspension, please see the end of the page for some important notes.

An estimate for your 2020 certification and inspection fees was sent with the login information. Please promptly send payment to the address on the invoice. If you are a new applicant, OCIA will not review your file until payment is received.

If you are submitting hardcopies of any supporting documents, please mail them to the address on the invoice. Failure to submit required supporting documents may lead to delays in the review.

Once a complete file is received, OCIA will complete a pre-inspection review. During this process, OCIA will contact you if additional information is needed. Please respond to any communication from OCIA in a timely manner.

Please contact OCIA International if you have any questions.

New applicants: Please be reminded that as a new applicant, your operation currently cannot label or sell product as organic. If organic certification is granted, an organic certificate will be issued and product can then be sold as organic.

For farm operations, the inspector must see your crop in the field, so check-strips must be left in all fields requested for certification if any harvest occurs prior to inspection. For hay fields, any hay harvested prior to inspection cannot be certified as organic.

For suspended operations: Please be aware that no product can be sold as “organic” while suspended and previous product is no longer “organic.” For farm operations, any crops currently in storage are no longer organic and must be sold conventionally. Only crops harvested after reinstatement, if it is granted, may be sold as “organic.” Any crops harvested from fields prior to reinstatement must be sold conventionally.

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