As of June 23, USDA has allocated $4 billion of $16 billion in direct payments as part of its Coronavirus Food Assistance Program (CFAP). Just over $84 million has been distributed to the specialty crop industry, or 2.1%.
- Livestock: $2 billion
- Non-Specialty: $1 billion
- Dairy: $895 million
- Specialty: $84 million
For Western Growers member states – Arizona, California, Colorado and New Mexico – the specialty crop industry has received $36 million, or 0.9% of total allocations.
- California: $27.7 million
- New Mexico: $4.2 million
- Arizona: $4.1 million
- Colorado: $39 thousand
To assist members in accessing the CFAP direct payment program, Western Growers has summarized the key eligibility requirements, payment limitations and procedures for applying in a new CFAP Direct Payment Program Fact Sheet.
CFAP provides financial assistance to producers of agricultural commodities who have suffered a five-percent-or-greater price decline due to COVID-19 and face additional significant marketing costs as a result of lower demand, surplus production, and disruptions to shipping patterns and the orderly marketing of commodities.
For eligible specialty crops, the total payment will be based on the volume of production sold between January 15 and April 15, 2020; the volume of production shipped, but unpaid; and the number of acres for which harvested production did not leave the farm or mature product destroyed or not harvested during that same time period, and which have not and will not be sold.
Eligible specialty crops include:
Fruits: apples, avocados, blueberries, cantaloupe, grapefruit, kiwifruit, lemons, oranges, papaya, peaches, pears, raspberries, strawberries, tangerines, tomatoes, watermelons
Vegetables: artichokes, asparagus, broccoli, cabbage, carrots, cauliflower, celery, sweet corn, cucumbers, eggplant, garlic, iceberg lettuce, romaine lettuce, dry onions, green onions, peppers, potatoes, rhubarb, spinach, squash, sweet potatoes, taro
Nuts: almonds, pecans, walnuts
Other: beans, mushrooms
Additional crops may be deemed eligible at a later date.
Applying for Assistance
Producers can apply for assistance beginning on May 26, 2020. Additional information and application forms can be found at farmers.gov/cfap. Producers of all eligible commodities will apply through their local FSA office. Applications will be accepted through August 28, 2020.
USDA Service Centers are open for business by phone appointment only. While program delivery staff will continue to come into the office, they will be working with agricultural producers by phone and using email and online tools whenever possible.
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