Signup began September 21 and runs through December 11, 2020, for the second round of Coronavirus Food Assistance Program payments (CFAP 2) at the USDA Farm Service Agency (FSA) Office that serves your farming operation . The purpose of CFAP 2 is to provide financial assistance to producers who continue to face market disruptions and associated costs because of COVID-19. Producers do not have to prove their individual losses/ increased costs to be eligible for a CFAP 2 payment. The fact that you grow an eligible crop/commodity qualifies you for a CFAP 2 payment.
Most Massachusetts producers had very limited eligibility under the initial CFAP since eligibility was basically limited to carryover 2019 crops marketed between January 15 -April 15, 2020. CFAP 2 significantly expands the number of eligible crops and uses 2019 calendar year sales of eligible crops as the basis for payments. CFAP 2 provides assistance for eligible dairy, livestock, poultry, fruit, vegetable, aquaculture, honey , maple sap, wool, Christmas trees, flowers and eligible nursery crops grown by the applicant.
Crops purchased for resale are ineligible for CFAP 2. Value-added or processed crops (such as apple cider) are eligible but applicants will have to determine the value of the commodity prior to processing and use that figure rather than the sales of the value added or processed commodity. Eligible crops sold through CSA’s may be eligible provided they meet the FSA requirements for eligible CSA’s.
Payment reports capturing the first 4 weeks of CFAP 2 signup show that over $7.4 million has been paid out to 340 approved Massachusetts applicants.
More detailed information can be found here: www.farmers.gov/cfap
Producers are encouraged to contact their local FSA Office with any questions they have along with procedures to file an application and related paperwork. Sales records will not be required at the time of sign up, but producers will have to provide evidence of total sales if the application is selected for a later spot-check.
Bottom Line: If you grew and marketed an eligible crop, you are eligible for a CFAP 2 payment!