USDA Green Light for Additional Pandemic Aid for Farmers Who Have Suffered Animal Losses
Livestock and poultry producers who suffered losses during the pandemic due to insufficient access to processing can apply for assistance for those losses and the cost of depopulating and disposing of animals.
US Department of Agriculture (USDA) Secretary Vilsack announced the Livestock Pandemic Compensation Program (PLIP) in [recorded] remarks at the National Hog Industry Conference in Wisconsin Dells, WI. The announcement is part of USDA’s pandemic assistance initiative for growers. Livestock and poultry producers can apply for assistance from the USDA Farm Service Agency (FSA) from July 20 to September 17, 2021.
The consolidated finance law of 2021 authorized payments to producers for losses of livestock or poultry decimated from March 1, 2020 to December 26, 2020, due to insufficient access to processing due to the pandemic. PLIP payments will be based on 80% of the fair market value of the livestock and poultry and the cost of depopulating and disposing of the animal. Eligible livestock and poultry include pigs, chickens and turkeys, but pork producers are expected to be the main beneficiaries of the aid.
“Throughout the pandemic, we learned very quickly about the importance and vulnerability of the supply chain to our food supply,” Agriculture Secretary Vilsack said. “Many ranchers had to make the unfortunate decision to empty their livestock inventory when there was simply no other option. This targeted assistance will help livestock and poultry producers who have been among the hardest hit by the pandemic to ease the financial burden of these losses. “
Additional help planned
The previous administration offered pandemic aid using industry-wide flat rates, which does not take into account the different levels of injury experienced by different producers. An analysis supported by the pork industry predicted that disruptions in processing capacity in the pork supply chain create a situation in which small-scale pork producers and especially those who sell in the cash market or negotiate the prices, bear a disproportionate share of the losses.
The USDA looked at the difference between negotiated prices for hogs and the five-year average and documented a significant drop from April to September 2020 due to the pandemic. The USDA has set aside up to $ 50 million in pandemic assistance funds to provide additional assistance to small pig producers who use the cash market or negotiate prices. Details on additional targeted assistance are expected to be available this summer.
PLIP program details
Eligible livestock must have been depopulated from March 1, 2020 to December 26, 2020, due to insufficient access to processing due to the pandemic. Cattle must have been physically located in the United States or on United States territory at the time of depopulation.
Eligible livestock owners include natural or legal persons who, on the day the eligible livestock was depopulated, legally owned them. Packers, live poultry dealers and contract producers are not eligible for PLIP.
PLIP payments compensate participants for 80% of both the loss of eligible livestock or poultry and the cost of slaughter and disposal on the basis of a single payment rate per head. PLIP payments will be calculated by multiplying the number of eligible livestock or poultry by the per capita payment rate, then subtracting the amount of any payment the eligible livestock or poultry owner received for disposal of the. livestock or poultry as part of natural resources. Conservation Service (NRCS) Environmental Quality Incentives Program (EQIP) or state program. Payments will also be reduced by any Coronavirus Food Assistance Program (COFOG 1 and 2) payments paid out of the same inventory of pigs that have been depopulated.
There is no payment limit per person or legal entity on PLIP payments. To be eligible for payments, a natural or legal person must have an average adjusted gross income (AGI) of less than $ 900,000 for the 2016, 2017 and 2018 tax years.
Ask for help
Eligible livestock and poultry producers can apply for the PLIP starting July 20, 2021, by completing Form FSA-620, Pandemic Livestock Indemnity Program, and submitting it to any FSA county office. Additional documents may be required. Click here for a copy of the Funding Availability Notice and more information on how to apply.
Claims can be submitted to the FSA office at any USDA service center nationwide by mail, fax, hand delivery, or electronically. Click here to find your local FSA office. Livestock and poultry producers can also call 877-508-8364 to speak directly with a USDA employee ready to offer assistance.
As USDA seeks long-term solutions to rebuild a better food system, the Department is committed to providing financial assistance to farmers, ranchers, and agricultural producers and businesses who have been affected by the COVID market disruptions. -19. Since the USDA launched the Pandemic Assistance Initiative in March, the ministry has announced more than $ 7 billion in assistance to producers and agricultural entities. Click here to read more details.