Safety net programs open to local farmers

Wednesday, February 25, 2015

USDA offers two programs to local grain producers

Time is running out for farmers wanting to take advantage of the United States Department of Agriculture's Agriculture Risk Coverage and Price Loss Coverage safety net programs. The final day to update yield history or reallocate base acres is Feb. 27, and the final day for farm owners and producers to choose coverage is March 31.

"These programs provide financial protection against unexpected changes in the marketplace, so now is the time to have those final conversations, to ask any remaining questions, and to visit the Farm Service Agency to make these decisions," said Mark Cadle, Missouri State executive director.

"For the first time in many years, farmers have the opportunity to update yields or reallocate base, but if no changes are made by Feb. 27, the farm's current yield and base will be used," said Cadle. "If no program election occurs by March 31, then there will be no 2014 payments for the farm and the farm will default to PLC coverage through the 2018 crop year."

Nationwide, more than 3,500 training sessions have been conducted on the new safety-net programs, including over 300 in Missouri. The online tools, available at www.fsa.usda.gov/arc-plc, allow producers to explore projections on how ARC or PLC coverage will affect their operation under possible future scenarios.

Covered commodities include barley, canola, large and small chickpeas, corn, crambe, flaxseed, grain sorghum, lentils, mustard seed, oats, peanuts, dry peas, rapeseed, long grain rice, medium grain rice, which includes short grain rice, safflower seed, sesame, soybeans, sunflower seed and wheat. Upland cotton is no longer a covered commodity.

To learn more, farmers can contact the Lawrence County Farm Service Agency county office in Mt. Vernon at 466-7682 or the Barry County office in Cassville at 847-2862.

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