By Clark Putman
March 16 is the last day to make what is likely one of the most important business decisions you will make for your farming operation this year. If you have not already visited your local Farm Service Agency county office to make your election for either the Agriculture Risk Coverage or the Price Loss Coverage program and to sign your annual enrollment contract, you should call and make your appointment now.
Many of you are gearing up to head to the field for spring planting, but I cannot stress enough the importance of not letting this deadline get lost in the hectic day-to-day obligations of farm life. If you fail to enroll for 2019 ARC or PLC, you will be ineligible to receive a payment for the 2019 crop year.
ARC and PLC provide financial protections to farmers from substantial drops in crop prices or revenues and are vital economic safety nets for most American farms. These programs cover 20 commodities produced in the U.S.
FSA anticipates more than 1.7 million producers will enroll in ARC or PLC – that’s a lot of producers to assist in a short period of time. As of Feb. 3, FSA records in New York show 3,876 farms out of an expected 18,112 farms have completed ARC or PLC enrollment for the 2019 crop year.
Want to maximize your time visiting with FSA? Inquire about deadlines and options for also enrolling in 2020 ARC or PLC and updating PLC payment yields. Our staff will help you make the most out of your visit or set you up with a future appointment to help check FSA programs off your lengthy “to do” list.
If you’re still unsure about the choice of ARC or PLC, we offer online decision tools to help you determine the best program election for your farming operation. To access these tools, visit fsa.usda.gov/arc-plc.
Call FSA today for an appointment. To locate your local FSA office, visit farmers.gov/service-center-locator.
We know that time is money, so make the time to avoid losing the money.
Editor’s note: Clark Putman is New York state executive director for the USDA Farm Service Agency