Economic Research Report No. (ERR-14) 48 pp

February 2006

Conservation-Compatible Practices and Programs: Who Participates?

This report examines the business, operator, and household characteristics of farms that have adopted certain conservation-compatible practices, with and without financial assistance from government conservation programs. The analysis finds that attributes of the farm operator and household and characteristics of the farm business are associated with the likelihood that a farmer will adopt certain conservation-compatible practices and the degree to which the farmer participates in conservation programs. For example, operators of small farms and operators not primarily focused on farming are less likely to adopt management-intensive conservation-compatible practices and to participate in working-land conservation programs than operators of large enterprises whose primary occupation is farming.

Keywords: Conservation programs, conservation management practices, conservation structures, farm households, Conservation Reserve Program, Environmental Quality Incentives Program

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