Market Facilitation Program
The following information pertaining to the rates being paid to farmers by the Market Facilitation Program (MFP) provided in this National Affairs Update has been made available on the USDA Website.
Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue announced May 23, 2019 that USDA would again provide aid to assist farmers hurt by trade disruptions prompted by unjustified foreign retaliatory tariffs on their products through MFP. President Trump authorized USDA to provide up to $14.5 billion in direct payments through MFP for 2019 to assist impacted producers, which is in line with the estimated impacts of the retaliatory tariffs on – and non-tariff barriers to exports of – U.S. agricultural goods. Sign-up for the program begins Monday, July 29 and ends December 6, 2019. Check with the USDA website (click here) or your Farm Service Agency Office for more information on how to apply.
What commodities are covered?
Market Facilitation Program provides payments to eligible producers of:
- non-specialty crops, including alfalfa hay, barley, canola, corn, crambe, dried beans, dry peas, extra-long staple cotton, flaxseed, lentils, long grain and medium grain rice, millet, mustard seed, oats, peanuts, rapeseed, rye, safflower, sesame seed, small and large chickpeas, sorghum, soybeans, sunflower seed, temperate japonica rice, triticale, upland cotton, and wheat.
- specialty crops, including almonds, cranberries, cultivated ginseng, fresh grapes, fresh sweet cherries, hazelnuts, macadamia nuts, pecans, pistachios, and walnuts.
- dairy and hogs.
Who is Eligible?
MFP provides payments to eligible producers of covered commodities, which includes non-specialty crops, specialty crops, dairy, and livestock.
To be eligible for payments, applicants also must either:
- have an average adjusted gross income for tax years 2014, 2015, and 2016 of less than $900,000; or
- derive at least 75 percent of their adjusted gross income from farming or ranching.
Producers also must:
- comply with the provisions of the “Highly Erodible Land and Wetland Conservation” regulations, often called the conservation compliance provisions.
have a farm number with USDA’s Farm Service Agency.
How do payments work for non-specialty crops? (County Rates)
For non-specialty crops, assistance is based on a single-county payment rate multiplied by a farm’s total plantings of MFP-eligible crops in aggregate in 2019. Those per-acre payments are not dependent on which of those crops are planted in 2019. A producer’s total payment-eligible plantings cannot exceed total 2018 plantings. County payment rates range from $15 to $150 per acre, depending on the impact of unjustified trade retaliation in that county. Acreage of non-specialty must be planted by August 1, 2019 to be considered eligible for MFP payments.
Tennessee MFP 2019 County Per Acre Payment Rate
Unicoi: No information provided
Van Buren: $41
How do payments work for dairy, hogs, and specialty crops?
Dairy producers who were in business as of June 1, 2019, will receive a per hundredweight payment on production history, and hog producers will receive a payment based on the number of live hogs owned on a day selected by the producer between April 1 and May 15, 2019.
For specialty crops, producers will receive a payment based on 2019 acres of fruit or nut bearing plants.
- Dairy (milk): $0.20 per hundredweight
- Hogs: $11 per head
- Nuts: $146 per acre
- Cranberries: $.03 per pound at 21,371 pounds per acre
- Ginseng: $2.85 per pound at 2,000 pounds per acre
- Sweet cherries (fresh): $0.17 per pound at 9,148 pounds per acre
- Table grapes: $0.03 per pound at 20,820 pounds per acre
How do payments work for cover crops?
Producers affected by natural disasters who filed prevented planting claims then planted an MFP-eligible cover crop, with the potential to be harvested or for subsequent use as forage, qualify for a $15 per acre payment. Acreage of cover crops must be planted by August 1, 2019 to be considered eligible for MFP payments.
The first payment will be comprised of the higher of either 50 percent of a producer’s calculated payment or $15 per acre. The first payment will be made in mid-to-late August.
MFP payments will be made in up to three tranches (or portions), with the second and third tranches evaluated as market conditions and trade opportunities dictate. If conditions warrant, the second tranche will be made in November, and the third in early January.
For more information contact your local Farm Service Agency office or visit the USDA website by clicking here.