Ask FSA Andy about reporting acres, safety on the farm

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Corn planting
Corn planting (Farm and Dairy file photo)

Hello again friends,

“It’s all in the timing” and this year, with a planting season that has not been the friendliest, there seems to be a fair split between optimism and pessimism heading into another season.

Activity in the fields has ramped up considerably over the last few weeks and even seems to be winding down for some. Knowing that it often takes 110 days or more for corn to mature and soybeans can be up to 90 days to maturity, there is still some flexibility in planting plans if needed.

Final dates

In Ohio, the final planting date for corn was June 5 and for soybeans, it is June 20. If by chance, the weather takes an ugly turn and you are prevented from planting due to weather conditions or you experience failed acreage, please contact both your crop insurance agent and your local FSA office within 15 calendar days of the final planting date or disaster to report these acres.

The importance of reporting prevented planting/failed acres should not be overlooked. Reporting both prevented planted and failed acres allows for historical yields to be maintained for crop insurance, FSA programs ARC/PLC and NAP.

It is recommended for all producers who have prevented planted acres to check with their crop insurance agent before reporting these acres to the FSA to ensure the accuracy of the report, as requirements for historical planting differs between crop insurance and the USDA.

County committee

In only a few weeks’ time, the nomination period opens for those county committee terms that are expiring. The nomination period opens June 15. Farmers in every county benefit from these individuals who have taken the time to serve agriculture as a county committee member at their local FSA office.

Committee members play a vital role by helping local farmers manage tough financial times and natural disasters. They make decisions on local applications for federal farm programs and disaster relief. Committee members serve a three-year term and represent the townships surrounding their homes (their local LAA).

They are nominated and then voted on by active producers in those same townships. As the FSA county committee supports all producers in their community, anyone who is interested is strongly encouraged to nominate themselves or another eligible candidate or contact their local FSA office for more information.

The nomination period runs until August 1.

Weigh your risks

With the weather finally breaking, I know many of you have been spending long hours in the fields. I know of several farm-related accidents over the last month that have resulted in serious injury or death.

In our haste to beat the weather, we tend to push the limits of both machinery and men and then we end up paying for that. Being guilty of this myself, I can honestly say that in the 40 years or so that I have been involved in farming, when I reflect back, usually standing there scratching my head at the fine mess I’ve made, there has not been a single time when the risks I had taken were worth the potential reward.

Benjamin Franklin was spot on when he stated that “An ounce of prevention is worth more than a pound of cure.” Please be safe!

That’s all for now,
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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