The Ohio Livestock Environmental Assurance Program (LEAP) is an innovative and proactive program that helps Ohio livestock farms of all sizes and all species voluntarily prevent or minimize agricultural pollution risks. LEAP teaches farmers how to identify and prevent environmental risks through best management practices and work to comply with state and federal environmental regulations.
History of LEAP
LEAP was created in 1997 by the Ohio Livestock Coalition (OLC) to help Ohio’s livestock and poultry farmers blend sound production economics with environmental quality.
LEAP is a voluntary environmental assurance program for all major livestock species in Ohio, including sheep, beef and dairy cattle, swine and poultry. The program helps livestock and poultry farmers manage environmental challenges and effectively assess how farm management practices affect water quality. By participating in LEAP, farmers will learn how to operate and grow their livestock operation with environmental assurance, confidence and security. By increasing confidence, improving profits, reducing problems, enhancing relationships and enriching an image, LEAP will accomplish its primary objective – to promote sustainability by seeking profitable environmental solutions.
LEAP is coordinated by the OLC in cooperation with The Ohio State University (OSU) Extension, the Ohio Department of Natural Resources’ (ODNR) Division of Soil & Water Conservation, United States Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS), and various commodity and farm organizations.
To date, more than 6,000 livestock and poultry farmers in the Buckeye State have participated in the program.
Why LEAP Matters
Ohio’s farming community recognizes that consumers have concerns about the impact of farming on the environment, which is why all farmers must do their part to make sure they are educated on what needs to be done to protect the state’s streams and waterways.
That means, Ohio’s farmers must continue to improve our management practices – from managing manure responsibly to exploring techniques for improving air quality and reducing odors.