Ask FSA about breaking new ground

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Hey folks, summer is finally here. Wow, is it about time!

The deadline to report your crops is nearly here too, July 17. Yes, I know it is technically the 15th, but since we aren’t open on Saturday you get a few days’ reprieve.

Many of you have been in for a visit and it’s reminded me of a few things. The first thing that comes up, with frequency, is that if you have crop insurance or participate with us at FSA, you have a form on file with us called an AD-1026. This is a government term for a highly erodible and wetland conservation form. When you sign this, you are confirming that if you break new crop ground, clear ground, or install drain tile, you will run it by our office first. Please see that last word. (Hint: It’s first.)

In order to keep your crop insurance subsidy and your program benefits with FSA and NRCS, please let us know ahead of time. We need to make sure it isn’t a wetland or that what you are planning to do could cause you to lose your benefits.

We are not the USDA police. We do not want to tell you how to operate your farm. We want to help you avoid any potential issue on the front end, before it could become a problem. So please, let us know first. We can get the field checked out, and move forward from there.

New ground

A lot of you have new farms that you have picked up since last year. That’s great! Maybe you picked up a new farm that has “base acres”. If it has those magical base acres, it could make you eligible for an ARC/PLC program payment. In order to get that payment, you will need to show us your new lease or get the landowner to sign the ARC/PLC contract.

If you are the private type and don’t want us to know all the ins and outs of the lease, no worries. You can also bring us a statement signed by the owner that lets us know you are going to be farming their farm for the year, or however long they like keeping you. If you have this when you come to crop report, we can take care of the contract and save you another trip to the office.

Save some time

While we are saving you time, did you know that we can email your crop insurance agent your acreage report? I know they are calling you to get it in because they are calling me to see if you’ve been in. Let us help you out. If you’d like us to email your producer print, give us your agent’s email address, and we would be happy to send it to them.

I know this is a crazy time of year, fair season is here, and now that it’s light out until 9 p.m. you are working long days. If there is something we can do to make your life a bit easier, we are happy to oblige. Have a great week!

Until next time,

FSA Andy

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FSA Andy is written by USDA Farm Service Agency county executive directors in northeastern Ohio.

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