North Dakota Stockmen’s Association Member Update: Sept. 18, 2020
Coronavirus Food Assistance Program 2.0 unveiled
This morning, President Donald Trump and U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue announced up to an additional $14 billion for producers who continue to face market disruptions and associated costs because of COVID-19. Signup for the Coronavirus Food Assistance Program 2.0 (CFAP 2.0) will begin Sept. 21 and run through Dec. 11, 2020. Producers can apply for CFAP 2.0 at the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) Farm Service Agency (FSA) county offices.
USDA will use funds being made available from the Commodity Credit Corporation Charter Act and CARES Act to support livestock, row crops, specialty crops, dairy, aquaculture and many additional commodities. USDA has incorporated changes in CFAP 2.0 based on stakeholder engagement and public feedback.
CFAP 2.0 payments will be made for three categories of commodities: Price Trigger Commodities, Flat-Rate Crops and Sales Commodities.
Price Trigger Commodities
Price trigger commodities are major commodities that meet a minimum 5-percent price decline over a specified period of time. Eligible beef cattle, hog and pig, and lamb and sheep payments will be based on the maximum owned inventory of eligible livestock, excluding breeding stock, on a date selected by the producer, between April 16 and Aug. 31, 2020. Eligible price trigger crops include barley, corn, sorghum, soybeans, sunflowers, upland cotton and all classes of wheat. Payments will be based on 2020 planted acres of the crop, excluding prevented planting and experimental acres. Payments for price trigger crops will be the greater of: 1) the eligible acres multiplied by a payment rate of $15 per acre; or 2) the eligible acres multiplied by a nationwide crop marketing percentage, multiplied by a crop-specific payment rate, and then by the producer’s weighted 2020 Actual Production History (APH) approved yield. If the APH is not available, 85 percent of the 2019 Agriculture Risk Coverage-County Option (ARC-CO) benchmark yield for that crop will be used. For broilers and eggs, payments will be based on 75 percent of the producers’ 2019 production. Dairy (cow’s milk) payments will be based on actual milk production from April 1 to Aug. 31, 2020. The milk production for Sept. 1 to Dec. 31, 2020, will be estimated by FSA.
Crops that either do not meet the 5-percent price decline trigger or do not have data available to calculate a price change will have payments calculated based on eligible 2020 acres multiplied by $15 per acre. These crops include alfalfa, extra-long staple cotton, oats, peanuts, rice, hemp, millet, mustard, safflower, sesame, triticale, rapeseed and several others.
Sales commodities include specialty crops; aquaculture; nursery crops and floriculture; other commodities not included in the price trigger and flat-rate categories, including tobacco; goat milk; mink (including pelts); mohair; wool; and other livestock (excluding breeding stock) not included under the price trigger category that were grown for food, fiber, fur or feathers. Payment calculations will use a sales-based approach, where producers are paid based on five payment gradations associated with their 2019 sales.
Additional commodities are eligible in CFAP 2 that weren’t eligible in the first iteration of the program. A complete list of eligible commodities, payment rates and calculations can be found at www.farmers.gov/cfap.
There is a payment limitation of $250,000 per person or entity for all commodities combined. Applicants who are corporations, limited liability companies or limited partnerships may qualify for additional payment limits when members actively provide personal labor or personal management for the farming operation. In addition, this special payment limitation provision has been expanded to include trusts and estates for both CFAP 1.0 and 2.0.
Producers will also have to certify they meet the Adjusted Gross Income limitation of $900,000 unless at least 75 percent or more of their income is derived from farming, ranching or forestry-related activities. Producers must also be in compliance with Highly Erodible Land and Wetland Conservation provisions.
Applying for assistance
Producers can apply for assistance beginning Sept. 21. Applications will be accepted through Dec. 11. Additional information and application forms can be found at www.farmers.gov/cfap. Documentation to support the producer’s application and certification may be requested. All other eligibility forms, such as those related to adjusted gross income and payment information, can be downloaded from www.farmers.gov/cfap/apply. For existing FSA customers, including those who participated in CFAP 1.0, many documents are likely already on file. Producers should check with their FSA county office to see if any of the forms need to be updated.
Customers seeking one-on-one support with the CFAP 2.0 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.
Endangered Species Act protection denied for moose in North Dakota, other Midwest states
On Tuesday, federal officials denied extending protections under the Endangered Species Act to a subspecies of moose that historically appeared in four upper Midwestern states. The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service ruled “the northwestern subspecies” of moose historically found in North Dakota, Wisconsin, Minnesota and Michigan is stable. Further, the agency said there was no notable biological or other differences with similar moose across the border in Canada, where the population is healthy. Two environmental groups filed a petition in 2016 asking for a protected designation after moose in Minnesota – which has the region’s largest population of the subspecies – suffered a steep decline in the decade prior. Listing the moose under the act would have made it illegal to hunt them and likely produced habitat protections and federally funded research.
Pre-register for NDSA convention by Sept. 24 to save
The NDSA will be hosting its 91st Annual Convention & Trade Show, “Roaring into the ‘20s,” Oct. 8-10 at the Ramkota in Bismarck. A detailed convention preview is included in this month’s North Dakota Stockman magazine. A pre-registration form is also inserted in that issue or can be found online here. Pre-register by Sept. 24 to save on registration fees and meals. The room block at the Ramkota also closes Sept. 24. To make hotel reservations, call (701) 258-7700. Mention the North Dakota Stockmen’s Association Convention to take advantage of the discounted room rate of $109 plus tax.
NDSA to host Tomorrow’s Top Hands Beef Leadership Summit
Students ages 14 to 20 years old who are interested in the beef industry are invited to take part in the 2020 Tomorrow’s Top Hands Beef Leadership Summit, which is scheduled for Oct. 22-24 at the Sleep Inn & Suites in Minot. The Tomorrow’s Top Hands Beef Leadership Summit is a high-energy leadership development and career exploration event with national-level speakers, industry tours and training for the industry’s next-generation leaders. Full details and registration forms can be found here.
Bale removal deadline for CRP extended in North Dakota
North Dakota producers have been granted an extension to remove hay bales from Conservation Reserve Program (CRP) acres. The non-emergency and emergency hay removal deadline has been extended to Oct. 1. For this year only (2020), the Oct. 1 deadline extension was granted to alleviate potential damage to CRP acreage caused by excess moisture received. Contact your local Farm Service Agency office with any questions.
FirstLink offers mental health support
Help is available if you or someone you know is in need of emotional support as a result of farm stress. You are not alone, and help is as easy as dialing 211. The FirstLink Helpline provides confidential listening and support on a variety of topics, including financial assistance and mental health support. For help or to connect to available resources, dial the 24-hour helpline at 211 or (701) 235-7335 (SEEK). The 24-Hour Suicide Lifeline is (800) 273-8255 (TALK). Find FirstLink online here.