Untimely rains are causing planting delays and otherwise disrupting farming operations across the Mid-South and in parts of Texas and Oklahoma as most of the country prepares to celebrate the Memorial Day weekend.
Representatives of USDA’s Farm Service Agency in those states are reminding producers they must report prevented planting and failed acres on their farms no later than 15 days after the final planting date to establish or retain FSA program eligibility.
“We know producers have had problems with cooler temperatures and heavy rains across the state,” said Tony Franco, chief of the Farm Programs Division in the state FSA office in Little Rock, Ark. “Some have been delayed in planting and others are having to replant their crops or switch to an alternative.”
Franco was a panelist on a University of Arkansas Extension Service webinar, “:2015-16 U.S. and Global Rice Outlook with Nathan Childs, USDA Agricultural Economist” in Little Rock. Franco conducted a pre-session briefing updating growers on acreage reporting requirements actions required for crops that are prevented planting and failed acres.
“Producers must report crop acreage they intended to plant, but due to natural disaster, were prevented from planting,” he noted. “Prevented planting acreage must be reported on form FSA-576, Notice of Loss, no later than 15 calendar days after the final planting date as established by FSA and Risk Management Agency.
Those final planting dates are:
- Corn, April 25; grain sorghum, May 15; peanuts, May 25; rice, May 25; soybeans not following another crop, June 15; soybeans following another crop, June 25;
- For cotton planted in the following counties: Clay, Craighead, Crittenden, Cross, Greene, Jackson, Lawrence, Mississippi, Poinsett, St. Francis, White, and Woodruff, May 20;
- For cotton planted in Arkansas, Ashley, Bradley, Chicot, Clark, Dallas, Desha, Drew, Jefferson, Lafayette, Lee, Lincoln, Little River, Lonoke, Miller, Monroe, Phillips, Prairie, and Pulaski Counties, May 25.
“If a producer is unable to report the prevented planting acreage within the 15 calendar days following the final planting date, a late-filed report can be submitted,” Franco said. “Late-filed reports will only be accepted if FSA conducts a farm visit to assess the eligible disaster condition that prevented the crop from being planted. A measurement service fee will be charged.
Additionally, producers with failed acres should also use form FSA-576, Notice of Loss, to report failed acres.
For losses on crops covered by the Non-Insured Crop Disaster Assistance Program (NAP) and crop insurance, producers must file a Notice of Loss within 15 days of the occurrence of the disaster or when losses become apparent. Producers must timely file a Notice of Loss for failed acres on all crops including grasses.
“Please contact your local County FSA to schedule an appointment to file a Notice of Loss,” said Franco.
Franco told specialty crop growers a 72-hour notice requirement applies for NAP hand-harvested crops. “For hand-harvested crops at least one producer having a share in the unit must notify FSA of damage or loss through the administrative county Office for the unit within 72 hours of the date damage or loss first becomes apparent.
“This information is required for crops that quickly deteriorate after a disaster and will require a prompt appraisal to account for accurate production.
Growers, must also keep acreage reporting dates in mind for all crops in all Arkansas counties. Those are May 15, 2015, for tomatoes and tomatillos and July 15, 2015, for CRP and all other crops.”
The following exceptions apply to the above acreage reporting dates:
- If the crop has not been planted by the above acreage reporting date, then the acreage must be reported no later than 15 calendar days after planting is completed.
- If a producer acquires additional acreage after the above acreage reporting date, then the acreage must be reported no later than 30 calendars days after purchase or acquiring the lease. Appropriate documentation must be provided to the county office.
- If a perennial forage crop is reported with the intended use of “cover only,” “green manure,” “left standing,” or “seed,” then the acreage must be reported by July 15.
“Noninsured Crop Disaster Assistance Program (NAP) policy holders should note that the acreage reporting date for NAP covered crops is the earlier of the dates listed above or 15 calendar days before grazing or harvesting of the crop begins,” Franco said.
He also reminded growers FSA county office will soon begin the enrollment process for 2014 and 2015 ARC/PLC program. Enrollment into the PLC, ARC-CO, or ARC-IC is an annual decision.
“Failing to enroll a farm into the annual PLC or ARC programs results in no payments to that farm that year,” he said. “All producers with a share interest in contract base acres must sign the enrollment contract by the end of the enrollment period. That date has not yet been announced, but we will provide that date to growers when it becomes available.”
For more information prevented planted acres, visit http://www.rma.usda.gov/news/currentissues/prevented/