Congressman Leonard Boswell (IA-3) today encouraged the U.S. Department of Agriculture to lift restrictions on farmland set aside for the Conservation Reserve Program (CRP) in order to help aid livestock producers coping with Iowa's increasingly severe drought conditions.
"As a cow-calf producer myself, I understand the pain being felt by Iowa producers due to these extended periods of intense heat and lack of rain. Because of the severe weather situation, Iowa producers are facing high feed costs and liquidation of cattle if the situation does not dramatically improve," Boswell said. "In light of this, I call on the USDA to open up Conservation Reserve Program (CRP) land for grazing and haying and to coordinate closely with our counties and state during this critical time. Our producers require relief, and this is a simple and effective way to ensure our state's entrepreneurs and livestock are tended to."
Pasture conditions have been rapidly downgraded in states throughout the Midwest. Nearly half of Iowa's pasture and range land is now rated "poor to very poor," according to the latest USDA crops and weather report.