The Farm Service Agency (FSA) reminds producers who are interested in the 2016 Noninsured Crop Disaster Assistance Program (NAP), of the need to apply for coverage by the following crop deadline.
March 15, 2016 is the deadline for 2016 NAP coverage on forage sorghum, oats, potatoes, soybeans, sunflowers and all spring planted specialty crops grown for food.
The 2014 Farm Bill provides greater coverage for losses when natural disasters affect specialty crops. Previously, the program offered coverage at 55 percent of the average market price for crop losses that exceed 50 percent of expected production. Producers can now choose higher levels of coverage, up to 65 percent of their expected production at 100 percent of the average market price. The expanded protection is especially helpful to beginning and socially disadvantaged producers, as well as farmers with limited resources, who will receive fee waivers and premium reductions for expanded coverage.
Eligible producers can apply for 2016 NAP coverage at the Shelby County FSA Office using form CCC-471, Application for Coverage. The service fee for basic NAP coverage is the lesser of $250 per crop or $750 per producer per administrative county, not to exceed a total of $1,875 for a producer with farming interest in multiple counties. Producers interested in buy-up coverage must pay a premium, in addition to the service fee. The maximum premium will be $6,564.
Producer meeting the definition of a socially disadvantaged farmer, beginning farmer or limited resource farmer will have service fees waived. Producers meeting this definition that choose to purchase buy-up coverage will also have service fees waived and the premium will be capped at $3,282.
To help producers learn more about the NAP program and how it can help them, USDA, offers an online Web tool at www.fsa.usda.gov/nap. The webtool allows producers to determine whether their crops are eligible for coverage and gives producers an opportunity to explore a variety of options and levels to determine the best protection level for their operation.
The Farm Service Agency makes loans to youths to establish and operate income-producing projects in connection with 4-H clubs, FFA and other agricultural groups. Projects must be planned and operated with the help of the organization adviser, produce sufficient income to repay the loan and provide the youth with practical business and educational experience. The maximum loan amount is $5000.
Applicants must be a citizen of the United States, between 10 years to 20 years of age, obtain a written recommendation and consent from a parent or guardian if the applicant has not reached the age of majority under state law, comply with FSA’s general eligibility requirements, be unable to get a loan from other sources, conduct a modest income-producing project in a supervised program of work as outlined above, and demonstrate capability of planning, managing and operating the project under guidance and assistance from a project advisor. The project supervisor must recommend the project and the loan, along with providing adequate supervision.
The writer is the executive director for the Shelby County FSA Committee and can be reached at 937-492-6520, ext. 2.