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CRP acreage decline not as sharp as expected

Agriculture.com Staff 03/08/2007 @ 2:27pm

Of the 28 million acres in the Conservation Reserve Program (CRP) for which contracts will expire in the next three years, slightly more than 4 million will exit the program, according to USDA survey data released Thursday.

The 4.1-million-acre figure for exiting acres includes all general sign-up contracts expiring that were not re-enrolled last year. The number, according to USDA, does not include acres under expiring continuous sign-up contracts, or those eligible for re-enrollment during the final year of existing contracts.

Of the acres slated to leave CRP, 1.4 million of those come from "major corn producing states," Secretary of Agriculture Mike Johanns said Thursday. All in all, while the drop isn't much of a surprise, Johanns said many expected a larger drop because of the current bullish corn market.

"The percentage of landowners choosing to remain in CRP is consistent with what we have seen in the past, despite speculation that re-enrollment would drop significantly due to high corn prices," Johanns said.

Of the 28 million acres in the Conservation Reserve Program (CRP) for which contracts will expire in the next three years, slightly more than 4 million will exit the program, according to USDA survey data released Thursday.

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