Photo Credit: Iowa Soybean Association

Photo Credit: Iowa Soybean Association

Iowa Soybean Association, NRCS and Partners Accepting Applicants in $25.8M North Raccoon Watershed Project

November 24, 2021 | Brock Johnston

Ankeny, Iowa — Farmers and landowners in the North Raccoon River Watershed are now eligible for a significant boost in funding assistance for conservation practices on their properties. 

The Iowa Soybean Association (ISA) and 11 partner organizations including ag retailers, federal and state agencies and the City of Des Moines are moving forward with watershed improvement plans along the North Raccoon River. The activity is the result of a Regional Conservation Partnership Program (RCPP) award courtesy of the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Natural Resources Conservation Service (USDA-NRCS).

The project combines more than $16 million in partner contributions with $9.8 million in RCPP funds to help farmers and landowners implement land management practices to reduce nutrient and sediment volumes from the watershed over the next five years.

“To implement the number of practices involving the number of acres needed to make an impact, resources and partners must be aligned and leveraged,” said Roger Wolf, ISA Director of Research Center for Farming Innovation. “This project does both.”

Participants in portions of Boone, Buena Vista, Calhoun, Carroll, Dallas, Greene, Pocahontas, Polk, Sac and Webster counties are eligible for funding supporting conservation activities.

With 85% of watershed land area dedicated to soybean, corn and livestock production, ISA recognizes the symbiotic benefit funding resources present and encourages the nearly 1,800 farmer members of the association located in the project area to apply.

A cover crop cost-share program, as well as financial incentives for nutrient treatment wetlands, saturated buffer systems, bioreactors and oxbow wetland restorations, are now available for farmers and landowners through the project.

The partnership has uniquely positioned conservation specialists in ag retailer locations throughout the project area to minimize participation barriers and guide in practice decisions.

Applications for farmers and landowners residing in the North Raccoon River Watershed are open and will be accepted in an ongoing signup.

All sign up and financial assistance is administered through local NRCS offices. For general inquiries about the project, contact Theo Gunther at


Funded by the soybean checkoff


The Iowa Soybean Association ( is “Driven To Deliver” increased soybean demand through market development and new uses, farmer-focused research and results, timely information and know-how and policy initiatives enabling farmers and the industry to flourish. Founded in 1964 by farmers to serve farmers, ISA is governed by a board of 22 farmers to advocate on behalf of the state’s 40,000 soybean producers, including more than 15,000 ISA farmer members and industry stakeholders.