By: Kurt Fuchs, Senior Vice President of Government Affairs
The Trump Administration announced in May that it intended to craft a second round of trade aid for American agricultural producers impacted by ongoing trade disputes. Over the course of the summer, USDA Secretary Sonny Perdue and his team developed a three pronged approach to the $16 billion package that once again includes direct payments for eligible specialty and non-specialty crops through the Market Facilitation Program ($14.5B), commodity purchases ($1.4B), and trade promotion ($100M). Below are the official USDA highlights of the program and a link to the full press release which includes additional details. Find USDA’s Market Facilitation Program landing page here.
Sign up began earlier this week at local FSA offices and online with first payments expected by mid-late August.
Non-specialty Crops (highlighted in the press release below)
For non-specialty crops, assistance is based on a single-county payment rate multiplied by a farm’s total plantings of MFP-eligible crops in aggregate in 2019. Those per-acre payments are not dependent on which of those crops are planted in 2019. A producer’s total payment-eligible plantings cannot exceed total 2018 plantings. County payment rates range from $15 to $150 per acre, depending on the impact of trade retaliation in that county. Acreage of non-specialty must be planted by August 1, 2019 to be considered eligible for MFP payments.
Dairy, Hogs, and Specialty Crops
Dairy producers who were in business as of June 1, 2019, will receive a per hundredweight payment on production history, and hog producers will receive a payment based on the number of live hogs owned on a day selected by the producer between April 1 and May 15, 2019.
For specialty crops, producers will receive a payment based on 2019 acres of fruit or nut bearing plants.
- Dairy (milk): $0.20 per hundredweight
- Hogs: $11 per head
- Nuts: $146 per acre
- Cranberries: $.03 per pound at 21,371 pounds per acre
- Ginseng: $2.85 per pound at 2,000 pounds per acre
- Sweet cherries (fresh): $0.17 per pound at 9,148 pounds per acre
- Table grapes: $0.03 per pound at 20,820 pounds per acre
Producers affected by natural disasters who filed prevented planting claims then planted an MFP-eligible cover crop, with the potential to be harvested or for subsequent use as forage, qualify for a $15 per acre payment. Acreage of cover crops must be planted by August 1, 2019 to be considered eligible for MFP payments.