Farm scene with ghosted money

COLUMBIA, Mo. — University of Missouri Extension economists have prepared an online overview of the USDA’s Coronavirus Food Assistance Program to help all producers.

Signup for direct relief due to COVID-19 began May 26 and ends Aug. 28 at local USDA Farm Service Agency offices, MU Extension economist Scott Brown says in a news release.

Extension agriculture business and policy specialists created the educational pieces to help any U.S. producer understand the program before they visit their local FSA offices.

Visit bit.ly/3gz7czF for the guide, which offers eligibility requirements, examples, videos and calculators.

Producers must make telephone appointments with FSA representatives or email them. They also may apply online.

If you are an existing customer, much of the required information likely will be on file at the FSA office. If not, prepare by having your personal information, tax identification number and direct deposit information. Be prepared to explain your farm operating structure and have information regarding your adjusted gross income compliance certification to ensure eligibility.

Applicants will self-certify, but should keep records for spot checks and audits.

Brown says payment details are complicated and “everyone won’t be happy, but they will be happy to see payments headed their way.”

Eligible farmers and livestock producers will receive 80% of their calculated payment now under the CFAP plan. The remaining 20%, not to exceed the payment limit, will come later this year, depending on remaining monies available under the total $16 billion CFAP monies.

Eligible commodities must have suffered a 5% or more price decline or serious supply chain disruptions due to COVID-19. Income restrictions apply for individuals and different legal entities.

Apply at www.farmers.gov/cfap.