Ask FSA Andy: Get ready for spring


Hello Again!

It seems as though spring has come early, as I watch the snow drops bloom and see the daffodils shooting skyward. This has been an unusual winter and I’m pretty sure that we can count on more snow and cold before it’s all said and done. March has a way of catching us thinking spring but still plowing snow yet.

March is the time for completing planning for the coming planting season and all that goes with it. For those of you that need to purchase Non-Insured Assistance Program Crop Coverage for spring planted NAP crops the deadline is March 15. This deadline applies to the following spring planted crops: 2012 forage sorghum, oats, potatoes, soybeans, sunflowers, and all spring planted specialty crops grown for food.

NAP covers losses caused by damaging weather conditions. Producers receive payment when the loss is in excess of 50 percent. Losses are generally determined by the percentage of loss compared to the producer’s actual yield history.

NAP coverage is only available for crops not covered under the Federal Crop Insurance program and is required for certain USDA program participation.

CRP signup. USDA has announced a Conservation Reserve Program (CRP) general signup that will begin March 12 and run through April 6. Land that is not currently enrolled in CRP can be offered for enrollment during this time.

In addition, CRP participants with contracts expiring Sept. 30 may submit offers.

CRP is a voluntary program available to agricultural producers to help them use environmentally sensitive land for conservation benefits. All applications must meet land and person eligibility requirements and will be ranked according to the Environmental Benefits Index (EBI).

In addition to the general CRP signup, USDA has also announced the new Highly Erodible Cropland Initiative for the Conservation Reserve Program. Producers can enroll land on a continuous basis beginning this summer. The new initiative will assist producers targeting their most highly erodible cropland (land with an erodibility index of 20 or greater) by enabling them to plant wild-life friendly, long-term cover through the Conservation Reserve Program.

CRP participants with contracts expiring Sept. 30 with eligible land may also make new offers.

As always we encourage you to contact your local FSA office with questions or concerns.

That’s all for now,
FSA Andy

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