Ruminant Feed Source Opportunity
The most immediate and compelling positive return on investment (ROI) for cover crops is using them as a feed source (e.g., grazing, silage, hay) for ruminant livestock (e.g., beef, dairy, sheep, goats).
Energy Feedstock Opportunity
There is a potential long-term opportunity for cover crops as a feed stock for methane digesters.
There are challenges to identify and convey the economic benefits of planting cover crops on land that is rented. The trend towards an increasing percentage of acreage under absentee land owners makes this even more important.
Cost Share Support from Downstream Companies
There is a significant opportunity for downstream companies (e.g., Unilever, PepsiCo, other consumer packaged goods companies and retailers) to privately fund cost share to growers in their supply chain.
Leveraging Federal Programs
Federal investments in financial assistance for cover crops (e.g., the Conservation Stewardship Program (CSP), the Regional Conservation Partnership Program (RCPP) and EQIP) continue to create significant opportunities for farmers and landowners.
Leveraging State Investments
State investments in financial assistance for cover crops (e.g., Water Quality Initiative (WQI) State Funding, WQI watershed projects, the Crop Insurance Cover Crop Premium Discount program and special projects) continue to create significant opportunities for farmers and land owners.