by Courtney Llewellyn
The USDA’s Agricultural Marketing Service (AMS) and Farm Service Agency (FSA) hosted a short webinar on May 14 for farmers, ranchers and other producers interested in applying for direct payments through the Coronavirus Food Assistance Program (CFAP).
Ag Secretary Sonny Perdue announced CFAP on April 17. The program will use funding and authorities provided in the Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security Act, the Families First Coronavirus Response Act and other USDA existing authorities. The $19 billion immediate relief program aims to provide critical direct support to farmers, maintain the integrity of the country’s food supply chain and ensure every American has access to the food they need.
The USDA is providing $16 billion in direct support based on losses for ag producers where prices and market supply chains have been impacted. The USDA will also assist eligible producers facing additional adjustment and marketing costs resulting from lost demand and short-term oversupply for the 2020 marketing year caused by COVID-19.
Information on the general application process and required documentation prior to the official beginning of signup for CFAP were presented by AMS Deputy Administrator Sonia Jimenez and FSA Deputy Administrator for Farm Programs (and Pennsylvania farmer) Bill Beam.
“Some producers may be new to working with FSA,” Jimenez noted. She said their first step should be getting in touch with their local FSA offices to schedule an appointment to ensure they have everything they need.
More information on eligible crops and applications will be available once the CFAP rule is completed and published in the Federal Register. Until then, prerequisite forms are available on the website http://farmers.gov/cfap.
Beam briefly reviewed the forms farmers may need to fill out (which are listed and available on the website):
- CCC-902 – Farm Operating Plan
- CCC-901 – Identifies members of a farm (including names, addresses, tax ID numbers and citizenship status)
- CCC-941 – Average adjusted gross income for programs where income restrictions apply
- CCC-942 – Certifies income from farming, ranching and forestry for those exceeding adjusted gross income limitations
- AD-1026 – Ensures a conservation plan is in place for wetlands and highly erodible land
- AD-2047 – Basic customer contact information
- SF-3881 – Banking information to allow the USDA to make payments to you via direct deposit
While the application process for CFAP has not yet begun, farmers and producers can start gathering the information needed for those forms to apply.
Keep abreast of CFAP information at http://farmers.gov/cfap.