Farmers can get loans for cold storage

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WASHINGTON — The USDA’s Farm Storage Facility Loan program has been amended to allow producers to build cold storage facilities to store their fresh fruits and vegetables.

Eligibility

To be eligible, cold storage facilities must have a useful life of 15 years and include:

— New structures suitable for a cold storage facility;

— New walk-in prefabricated permanently installed coolers suitable for storing fresh fruits and vegetables;

— New permanently affixed cooling, circulating and monitoring equipment;

— Electrical equipment integral to the proper operation of a cold storage facility; and must be

— An addition or modification to an existing storage facility.

USDA will not make cold storage facility loans for portable structures, portable handling and cooling equipment, used or pre-owned structures or cooling equipment or structures not suitable for a fresh fruits and vegetables’ cold storage facility.

$500,000 max

The maximum loan amount for a Farm Storage Facility loan is $500,000 per loan.

One partial disbursement of up to half the anticipated total cost is available when that portion of the structure has been completed. The final disbursement will be made when the entire structure has been completed and inspected by a USDA representative.

All loans require a down payment of at least 15 percent. Applications must be approved before construction can begin. Loan terms of seven, 10 or 12 years are available depending on the amount of the loan.

Loans applications should be submitted to the administrative USDA Farm Service Agency county office that maintains the records of the farm or farms to which the application applies.

For more information on this program, contact your local Farm Service Agency office or http://www.fsa.usda.gov.

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