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The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency requires concentrated animal feeding operations to develop and implement a comprehensive nutrient management plan. Changes in manure management to meet nutrient application standards will generally increase production costs. Some of these costs can be offset by savings from replacing commercial fertilizer with manure nutrients, and through financial assistance programs such as the U.S. Department of Agriculture's Environmental Quality Incentives Program (EQIP). A manure application cost model was used to examine the costs to confined dairy farms of meeting nutrient application standards, and the ability of fertilizer offsets and EQIP to reduce these costs.


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