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Farmers Urged to Apply for Emergency Loans Now

PPP and Disaster Loan Applications Being Accepted, But Funds Limited

 
Series: Coronavirus | Story 173


Farmers who wish to apply for Paycheck Protection Program (PPP loan) assistance should do so as soon as possible. The federal Small Business Administration (SBA) is accepting new Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL) and EIDL advance applications on a limited basis to provide relief to U.S. farms and agricultural businesses. Additionally, the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) also has coronavirus-related guidance for farms.

Pennsylvania Secretary of Agriculture Russell Redding and U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Farm Service Agency Administrator (FSA) Richard Fordyce have announced that $16 billion is available to Pennsylvania farmers in direct relief payments, through the Coronavirus Food Assistance Program (CFAP).

"Since COVID-19 hit Pennsylvania, our farmers have faced some of the most drastically changing markets in history," PA Agriculture Secretary Russell Redding said. "While they're used to dealing with some amount of risk and uncertainty, as they put nature into motion each year, farmers can only flex so far. These payments are a lifeline to keep them afloat as we work to return to some semblance of normalcy, an acknowledgement of the value of their work to nourish Pennsylvania."

Farmers who have been directly affected by the coronavirus pandemic are eligible for direct relief payments through the USDA's Coronavirus Food Assistance Program. CFAP provides vital financial assistance to producers of agricultural commodities who have suffered a five-percent or greater price decline or who had losses due to market supply chain disruptions due to COVID-19 and face additional significant market losses. Eligible commodities include:

• Non-specialty crops: malting barley, canola, corn, millet, oats, soybeans, sorghum, sunflowers, and durum or hard red spring wheat

• Wool

• Livestock

• Dairy

• Specialty crops including fruits, vegetables, nuts, mushrooms, and beans

"We know America's farmers and ranchers are facing a tough time now with price declines and disruption to markets," Administrator Fordyce said. "Our team is available over the phone and virtually to walk you through the application process, whether it's the first time you've worked with FSA, or if you know us quite well."

The maximum per person or entity payment is $250,000, the limitation applies to all eligible commodities. To ensure availability of funding throughout the application period, producers will receive 80 percent of their maximum total payment upon approval of the application; the remaining portion of the payment will be paid at a later date as funds remain available. Application deadline for direct relief payments is August 28, 2020.

"As a result of COVID-19, our farmers are facing significant supply chain disruptions and enormous challenges," said U.S. Senator Bob Casey. "I am grateful for the incredibly hard and important work that our farmers do every day. As more and more families face food insecurity in Pennsylvania and across the Nation, supporting our farmers and agricultural industry during this challenging time is more important than ever. Congress authorized this first round of funding through the CARES Act, but I know we still have more work to do to ensure that all of our farmers and families have the support they need."

"Farm families have been working around the clock to feed and fuel the country throughout the COVID-19 pandemic. We owe them a helping hand through these hard times," said Rep. Glenn "GT" Thompson. "The national emergency has challenged agriculture producers and it is important they have access to federal resources, including USDA's Coronavirus Food Assistance Program."

To learn more about CFAP including view the full list of eligible commodities, application, and final rule visit farmers.gov. Full link: https://www.farmers.gov/cfap

For more information on food security in Pennsylvania including information about resources and actions taken by the Wolf Administration, visit agriculture.pa.gov/foodsecurity. Full link: https://www.agriculture.pa.gov/Food_Security/Pages/default.aspx

For the most accurate and timely information related to Health in Pennsylvania, visit on.pa.gov/coronavirus. Full link: https://www.health.pa.gov/topics/disease/coronavirus/Pages/Coronavirus.aspx

 

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