Illinois pig farmers implementing tree buffers across state

Pig farmers in Illinois have opportunity to take part in tree buffer cost-share program.

Pig farmers in Illinois have the opportunity to take part in a tree buffer cost-share program. The Illinois Pork Producers Assn. (IPPA) and Illinois Farm Bureau (IFB) are offering this incentive for farmers to implement fresh landscaping on their pig farms.

Pig farmers from across the state have already utilized this program in the last year. A second wave of applications is now available for the 2017-18 marketing year.

“Tree buffers are just one of the current best management practices that pig farmers are embracing to benefit the environment. We are proud to partner with the Illinois Farm Bureau to offer these cost-share opportunities to progressive pig farmers who understand the importance of stewardship for our future generations, “ IPPA executive director Jennifer Tirey said.

A buffer is an area of trees that are strategically placed to provide a wind break, recycle clean air and provide curb appeal to a landscape. This cost-share program is offered to Illinois pig farmers on a first-come/first-served basis. The funding helps provide assistance for the purchase of trees and shrubs as well as design and tree placement.

Ted Funk, environmental engineer for IPPA, funded in part by the Illinois Soybean Assn. checkoff program, provides his research and planning talents to benefit farmers. A local extension educator may also play a role by suggesting the best types of trees for the desired location. This group effort is designed to ensure that farmers have all the right tools they need to create a useful tree buffer.

“It’s exciting to work with pork producers who are committed to making their farms look great by using some strategic landscaping vegetation. I’m pleased to see the continuing interest of Illinois commodity groups and Illinois Farm Bureau in helping make healthy, attractive communities,” Funk said.

Both IPPA and IFB said they are committed to providing farmers with the tools necessary to benefit the environment.

Lauren Lurkins, director of natural and environmental resources for IFB, explained that IFB “has made leading on environmental issues a priority, and this partnership will bring real benefits to both pig farmers and the environment.”

Pig farmers interested in applying for cost-share funds can download the application at www.ilpork.com.

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