USDA announces second round of Coronavirus Food Assistance for farmers and ranchers; many more commodities included
On Friday, September 18, the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) announced details of the new $14 billion Coronavirus Food Assistance Program, or CFAP 2. The program expansion will provide direct payments to farmers and ranchers to partially offset COVID-19 related losses. Sign up for CFAP 2 began September 21 and runs through December 11. Producers interested in signing up can do so at their local USDA Farm Service Agency (FSA) county office. FSA Service Center Locator.
“Since May, we have urged USDA to include more specialty crops including cranberries, sweet cherries, hazelnuts and hops to the list of crops eligible for Coronavirus Food Assistance Program funding,” said Alexis Taylor, director, Oregon Department of Agriculture. “We are pleased to see more commodities included in this second round of aid. “The COVID-19 pandemic has caused significant and continuing market disruptions and these dollars will provide Oregon growers with some much-needed relief.”
The CFAP 2 includes more commodities than the original program which focused on livestock, dairy and non-specialty crop producers. For more information about CFAP 2 eligible commodities and commodity payment rates, the USDA has an online tool to help. CFAP 2 Eligible Commodities Finder
The first round of CFAP aid was only available to producers who suffered losses from January 15 through April 15, 2020. The application period for the first round of CFAP began May 26 and ended September 11.
Applying for CFAP 2 Assistance
Producers can apply for assistance beginning September 21, 2020. Applications will be accepted through December 11, 2020. Additional information, eligibility requirements and application forms can be found online at farmers.gov/cfap.
Customers seeking one-on-one support with CFAP 2 application process can call 877-508-8364 to speak directly with a USDA employee ready to offer assistance. This is a recommended first step before a producer engages with the team at the FSA county office.