Producers Eligible for Disaster Relief: Includes flood, fire, freeze, tornadoes, pest infestation, and calamities
The USDA recently designated natural disaster areas in 256 counties across Arizona, California, Colorado, Idaho, Kansas, Nevada, Oklahoma, Texas, and Utah due to drought conditions. Thanks to the 2014 Farm Bill, qualified farmers and ranchers in affected counties can apply for a variety of safety net programs and loans. In addition to drought, the USDA’s Farm Service Agency also provides assistance for natural disaster losses resulting from flood, fire, freeze, tornadoes, pest infestation, and other calamities.
Farmers and ranchers in designated areas may qualify for low interest emergency loans through the USDA’s Farm Service Agency. Farmers in eligible counties have eight months from the date of the declaration (February 10, 2015) to apply for loans to help cover part of their losses.
To learn more about USDA Farm Service Agency disaster assistance programs, visit the Farm Service Agency factsheet page at www.fsa.usda.gov/factsheets or contact your local Farm Service Agency office at
Organic Producers on the Rise
The USDA recently announced that the organic industry is growing both domestically and globally. Since 2002, the number of organic operations in the US has increased by 250% and by more than 5% last year alone. The USDA is dedicated to fostering continued growth in the organic industry and has established programs that support conservation, provide access to loans and grants, fund organic research and education, integrate pest management, and administer cost-sharing programs to offset the costs of organic certification.
Any team considering development of organic markets should contact EIM to discuss a Value Added Producer Grant (VAPG) for submission next year. Additional information about organic resources from the USDA can be found at http://www.usda.gov/organic.