Michigan Agriculture Environmental Assurance Program (MAEAP)

MAEAP is a nationally recognized pro-active environmental assurance program targeted at Michigan’s agricultural industry, codified into law in March, 2011 (Public Acts 1 and 2).  MAEAP insures that producers are using cost-effective pollution prevention practices that assist them to be in compliance with applicable environmental regulations specific to the program and in conformance with Michigan Right to Farm guidelines and the USDA-NRCS standards.  MAEAP is an industry and governmental initiative initially signed by the directors of the MDARD and the Department of Environmental Quality (MDEQ) in 1998 that provides on-site farm specific risk assessments, education, and third party MDARD verification (farm inspections) for all size farms and all Michigan commodities.  MAEAP supporters include over 50 industry, university, state and federal agencies, local government, and conservation groups.

In FY13, there were 528 new verifications and 223 re-verifications in MAEAP.  Currently, 579 farms have been verified in the Livestock System, 698 farms have been verified in the Farmstead system (59% increase over 2012), and 611 farms have been verified in the Cropping System (67% increase over 2012).

Michigan is the second most agriculturally diverse state, second to California. As a result, a one-size-fits-all approach to environmental protection does not work on Michigan farms. MAEAP effectively overcomes this challenge by offering areas of concentration known as systems. Each system focuses on a different aspect of a farming operation. Farmers can become verified in all systems applicable to their farm. The systems are: Farmstead – The MAEAP Farmstead System addresses environmental risks of the entire farmstead, from safe fuel handling to the proper storage of fertilizers and pesticides. It focuses on protecting surface and groundwater. It is the one MAEAP system which is applicable to every size and kind of operation, from livestock to field crops, orchards, vegetable operations, greenhouses and nurseries.

Cropping – The MAEAP Cropping System primarily focuses on environmental issues related to cropping activities, such as irrigation and water use, soil conservation, and nutrient and pest management. The system has components focused on environmental issues related to managing diverse commodities. The 4Rs are a framework that aids MI farmers to reach the nutrient stewardship standards necessary for MAEAP verification.

Livestock – The MAEAP Livestock System primarily focuses on environmental issues related to livestock activities, including manure handling, storage and field application, as well as conservation practices to protect water and prevent soil erosion. The Livestock System targets all Michigan livestock farms, regardless of species or size. The Livestock System concentrates on production and conservation practices, equipment, structures and management activities associated with animal production. The 4Rs are a framework that aids MI farmers to reach the nutrient stewardship standards necessary for MAEAP verification.

MAEAP uses risk assessments found at www.maeap.org. Specifically the nutrient management components of both the Cropping (various systems) and Livestock are compatible. The 4R help to address critical areas of nutrient management.

 

Contact Information
Website:  www.maeap.org
Email: wilfordj9@michigan.gov
Phone: 517-284-5608
Address:  525 W Allegan PO Box 30017 Lansing MI 48909

The Fertilizer Institute
425 Third Street, S.W., Suite 950
Washington, DC 20024
Phone: 202.962.0490
Fax: 202.962.0577