The Market Facilitation Program (MFP) was first put into place in 2018 with its first round of relief. The payments were meant as a one-time push to compensate for trade disruptions. The 2018 payments have been made and the trade disruptions are still taking place, so USDA has announced a second round of MFP payments (MFP 2.0).
You can sign up for the MFP 2.0 now through December 6, 2019. Payments started to process in August when 50% of the payment owed was paid. Starting in November, 25% of the owed payment will process and in January the remaining 25% owed should process. There are some payment limitations to consider: $250,000 for non-specialty crops, $250,000 for specialty crops, $250,000 for livestock and no one person can exceed $500,000 in payments. Payments are based on a county rate per planted acre and are administered by your local FSA office.
FSA also recently announce the Wildlife and Hurricane Indemnity Program Plus (WHIP+) as part of the Disaster Relief Act of 2019. While WHIP+ is targeted at relief funds for recent wildfires, hurricanes, volcanoes, earthquakes, typhoons and other natural disasters, it will cover certain flood and excess moisture events in the Midwest. Also under the Disaster Relief act, USDA has provided supplemental payments to producers that have been prevented from planting an eligible crop and had coverage under Federal Crop Insurance.
To qualify for the “Top-Up” program, one must have had purchased a crop insurance policy in 2019 AND you must purchase a crop insurance policy in 2020 and 2021. Payments for the Top-Up program will be determined by the type of crop insurance policy that you purchased. If you purchased a Yield Protection (YP) or Revenue Protection Harvest Price Exclusion (RPHPE) policy, then you will receive an additional 10% payment based on the prevent plant indemnity that you already received. If you purchased a Revenue Protection Harvest Price Option (RPHPO) policy, then you will receive an additional 15% payment based on the prevent plant indemnity that you already received. Disbursement of the payments will begin mid-October.
If you did not have crop insurance in 2019, contact your local FSA office to see if there are some relief benefits available to you. There are some counties and crops that do qualify for a 2018 WHIP+ payment, so please contact your AgCountry Insurance Specialist to determine whether or not you are eligible.
If you have any additional questions, please contact your AgCountry Insurance Specialist.