My kids love Halloween, and judging from the decorations on some of the houses around the mile, there are several adults in my area who love it as well.
Sometimes it takes me back to when I was a kid. My mother would help make me up into either a ghost or some sort of bloody, zombie-like creature each October. Occasionally supplies, ideas and time would run short.
Those were the years she would resort to her old standby Halloween costume: the hobo. All it took was a stick, a colored handkerchief/bandana, old play clothes and a little dirt or coal dust. There were several hobos each year.
I still prefer seeing the homemade costumes to the store-bought ones. I usually try to slip those kids an extra piece of candy.
Of course I don’t dress up. I don’t need Halloween to be scared.
There are enough things out there like windstorms on mature corn, falling futures prices, and a visit from my banker to scare me.
Crop losses are another thing that can scare most farmers. For the most part, corn, soybean, and many wheat producers have the ability to purchase crop insurance to try to take some of the scariness out of fall harvest.
Not all crops, however, have coverage available through a crop insurance policy.
This is where Farm Service Agency can help. If crop insurance is not offered for a particular crop in your county, chances are FSA can cover that crop through the Noninsured Crop Disaster Assistance Program (NAP).
This program covers commodities including vegetables, orchard crops, hay and forage, honey and even maple sap, to name a few.
The NAP program has traditionally covered catastrophic losses. This basic coverage compensates yield losses above 50 percent of your established production at 55 percent of the established price.
The fee for this basic coverage is $250 per crop, not to exceed $750 per county and $1,875 per producer. Producers who qualify as Limited Resource, Beginning Farmer, or Socially Disadvantaged (SDA) can have this fee waived.
Beginning with the 2015 crop year, NAP participants will have the opportunity to “buy-up” coverage under this program. Most NAP crops, with this exception of those intended for grazing, will have buy-up coverage available at up to 65 percent of the approved yield and 100 percent of the average market price.
All details have not been released on this additional coverage, so be watching for those rules to come out.
The next purchase deadline for coverage is Nov. 20. This is the application deadline to purchase coverage for the 2015 crop year on apples, asparagus, blueberries, caneberries, cherries, chestnuts, forage for hay and pasture, grapes, nectarines, peaches, pears, plums, strawberries, honey and maple sap.
Most spring seeded specialty crops will carry a March 15, 2015, application deadline.
Contact your local FSA office for more information about the NAP program or to apply for coverage. Let the NAP program help make 2015 less scary for you.
That’s all for now!
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