Cover crop adoption by producers as part of a production cycle depends on their objectives regrading time management, cost vs benefits, and environmental obligations. A myriad of studies that examined the economics of cover crops found them to be often idiosyncratic, i.e., results depend on the region, weather patterns, soil type, and management practices. The studies determined that lack of long-term economic outlook for the incorporation of cover crops as one of the factors for their minimal adoption in many parts of the country. Thus, we aim to assess the economic impact of long-term adoption of cover crops as part of a production cycle. Partial budgeting tool, CoverCropEconomics, is used to generate the overall costs and benefits. The data on agronomic variables, i.e., yield, organic matter, applied nitrogen, soil microbial counts, and among others are obtained from a 30-year cover crop research conducted in Northwest Louisiana. The research reported a significant increase in yield for crops planted following cover crops. Additionally, research shows improvements in soil nitrogen and soil organic matter suggesting added profits to the farmer. Accounting for those economic and agronomic variables, overall long term net benefits of incorporating cover crops amount to 1,354 per acre, with majority of the benefits contribution through yield increase of cash crop. The results can be useful for conservation agencies to evaluate their current incentive payments toward cover crop adoption.


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