October deadlines approaching for 3 critical USDA pandemic assistance programs | TheFencePost.com
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October deadlines approaching for 3 critical USDA pandemic assistance programs

by Zach Ducheneaux
Administrator, Farm Service Agency

The coronavirus pandemic has impacted agricultural and forestry operations across the nation. USDA offers financial assistance for a broad set of customers — from farmers and ranchers to timber harvesters and haulers — through our Pandemic Assistance for Producers initiative. With signup deadlines quickly approaching, we are committed to reaching as many producers and businesses as possible to deliver this critical support.

UPCOMING SIGNUP DEADLINES

The signup period for three of our pandemic assistance programs closes in October. Specific deadlines are:



Coronavirus Food Assistance Program 2 – Oct. 12

Pandemic Livestock Indemnity Program – Oct. 12



Pandemic Assistance for Timber Harvesters and Haulers Program – Oct. 15

To those who haven’t yet applied: There’s still time, and we’re here to help.

USDA Service Centers are staffed with Farm Service Agency experts ready to provide support with your new or amended application. Visit farmers.gov/service-locator to find contact information for your local office.

If you’re not sure which program(s) best fit your operation, answering three simple questions may help.

Coronavirus Food Assistance Program 2:

Are you a farmer or rancher whose agricultural operation was impacted by the coronavirus pandemic? USDA’s Coronavirus Food Assistance Program 2 provides financial assistance for producers of commodities marketed in 2020 who faced market disruptions due to COVID-19. Producers of more than 300 commodities may be eligible for CFAP 2, including several that were not initially included such as livestock and poultry raised under contract and grass seed.

In August, USDA announced that producers of specialty crops and other sales-based commodities may substitute 2018 sales for 2019 sales when calculating CFAP 2 payments. Only 2019 sales were previously used to approximate the amount producers would have expected to market in 2020. This update provides additional flexibility to producers of sales-based commodities who had reduced sales in 2019. Producers who applied for CFAP 2 prior to this announcement may amend their application.

Visit farmers.gov/cfap for more information on CFAP 2, including eligible commodities, producer eligibility, payment limitations and structure, and options to apply before the Oct. 12 deadline.

Pandemic Livestock Indemnity Program:

Are you a swine, chicken, or turkey producer who suffered losses due to insufficient access to processing facilities during the coronavirus pandemic? USDA’s Pandemic Livestock Indemnity Program provides financial assistance to support producers of eligible livestock and poultry depopulated from March 1, 2020, through Dec. 26, 2020.

PLIP payments compensate eligible producers for 80 percent of the loss of the eligible livestock or poultry, and for the cost of depopulation and disposal, based on a single payment rate per head. Visit farmers.gov/plip to learn about additional eligibility requirements, payment rates for your specific operation, and options to apply before the Oct. 12 deadline.

Pandemic Assistance for Timber Harvesters and Haulers Program:

Are you a timber logger or trucker whose operation has been impacted by the coronavirus pandemic? USDA’s Pandemic Assistance for Timber Harvesters and Haulers program provides financial relief to timber harvesting and timber hauling businesses that experienced

a loss of at least 10 percent gross revenue from Jan. 1 through Dec. 1, 2020, compared to the same period in 2019.

Individual loggers or truckers, or legal entities, may be eligible for up to $125,000 in financial assistance through this program. Visit farmers.gov/pathh to learn about additional eligibility requirements and how to apply through your local USDA Service Center before the Oct. 15 deadline.

CONTACT FSA

If you answered yes to any of the above — or would like to learn more — we encourage you to reach out. There is an FSA office located in nearly every county across the United States. Visit farmers.gov/service-locator to find the contact information for your local office, where you can connect directly with FSA staff to discuss program details, eligibility requirements, and how to apply. You may also contact our call center at (877) 508-8364 to speak directly with a USDA employee ready to offer support.

At USDA, we are here to make your application process as easy as possible. Visit farmers.gov/pandemic-assistance to learn more about the Pandemic Assistance for Producers initiative, additional programs and services, and our commitment to equitably assisting producers impacted by the coronavirus pandemic.


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