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A Government program to put erodible land into a conservation reserve would reduce soil erosion and complement the goals of commodity programs by supporting crop prices and reducing Government deficiency and storage payments. To identify erodible and fragile land, this study developed land group criteria that link productivity with potential soil erodibility. About 32 million acres of U.S. cropland were identified as highly erodible and fragile. The study then estimated the impact of idling those acres on production and prices for seven major crops (corn, soybeans, wheat, sorghum, oats, barley, and cotton) under assumptions generally consistent with recent farm legislation.


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