USDA AID FOR FARMERS AND RANCHERS
Colorado Farm Bureau’s president calls a funding package by USDA for producers hurt by the COVD-19 crisis a rainbow of hope. Don Shawcroft says the Farm Bureau is happy the feds worked quickly on $19 billion in funding to aid the agriculture industry.
Shawn Martini, CFB’s Vice President of Advocacy says 16-billion dollars will go directly to producers.
Martini: “It will work similar to MFP payments that were the trade adjustment payments for the trade war with China. So it will be fairly non-intensive in terms of applying for those kinds of funds if you are a producer. We are encouraging all our people to renew their relationship with FSA, particularly our livestock producers. The livestock industry is going to be the number one beneficiary for that direct assistance. IF you are a livestock producer and you haven’t talked with FSA for awhile it’s a good idea to go down and ensure that you’re on their radar you’re in the system and to the extent that these payments are going to require an existing relationship so that you can prove up what your production has been in the past and what you’re anticipating it to be in the future, it’s good to go ahead and do that now.”
The funds will come from the $2.2 trillion CARES Act as well as supplementary USDA funds.
Martini says the department will also buy $3 billion in fresh produce, dairy, and meat to distribute to food banks, community organizations and charities. This should help alleviate the disarray producers, especially in the cow cattle industry, are experiencing. The Farm Bureau was closely involved with Colorado’s Senators and USDA in making sure the bulk of the funds went directly to producers.