Federal Support Available for Farmers and Ranchers during the Pandemic

The USDA’s Farm Service Agency has authorized $14 billion in payments to farmers and ranchers impacted by market disruptions due to the Covid-19 pandemic through the Coronavirus Food Assistance Program (CFAP 2). This assistance covers most producers, including those with livestock, specialty crops, and acreage crops. Main eligibility requirements include:

  1. Being in business at the time of application
  2. Commercially producing eligible* commodities
  3. An average adjusted gross income of less than $900,000

     *Additional eligibility requirements and included commodities can be found here

Different payment structures apply depending on the commodity produced and they are grouped into three categories: price trigger commodities, flat-rate crops, and sales commodities.

For livestock producers, payments will be calculated per head of livestock on the day with the highest inventory* between April 16-August 31, 2020. 

  • $55 per head of beef cattle
  • $23 per head of hogs
  • $27 per head of lamb and sheep

     *Inventory excludes breeding stock

For specialty crops, payments are based on 2019 sales data. Depending on the farm’s sales in 2019, farmers will be eligible to receive between 8.8%-10.6% of their total 2019 sales for raw commodities. For instance, if a farm had $20,000 in sales in 2019, they would be eligible for $2,120 in assistance. 

Payment information for other commodity types such as dairy, eggs, and acreage crops can be found on the USDA’s program fact sheet here. There is also an Excel worksheet available for producers to use to estimate the total assistance available to them.

As of October 13th, 2020, Oregon producers had received over $26,000,000 in relief assistance. The deadline to apply is December 11th, 2020.

Additional funding is also available for organic producers who received their certification or recertification from a USDA-accredited certifier between October 1, 2019 and September 30, 2020. Producers are eligible to receive a reimbursement of 50% of their certification fees up to a maximum of $500. Find more information about this reimbursement here

If you are a farmer or rancher in Central Oregon and are interested in learning more or want to apply, please contact Annie Nichols, HDFFA’s Farm and Ranch Support Manager, at annie@hdffa.org or give us a call at 541-390-3572.

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