Bartels, Davisson: Help available to farmers who suffered losses due to pandemic

Posted by: Jordan Wallace  | Thursday, June 11, 2020

STATEHOUSE (June 11, 2020) — Local farmers and agricultural producers directly impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic can apply for financial assistance through the U.S. Department of Agriculture's Coronavirus Food Assistance Program, according to State Reps. Stephen Bartels (R-Eckerty) and Steve Davisson (R-Salem).

Bartels said the initiative is providing $16 billion in direct relief payments for those in the agriculture industry experiencing income losses as a result of decreased demand for their products.

"Farmers are essential to both local communities and Indiana," said Bartels, vice chair of the House Agriculture and Rural Development Committee. "They are vital to our economy recovering, and this program offers some financial support while they continue working to fuel the food supply chain."

To be eligible for assistance, producers of agricultural commodities must have experienced at least a 5% price decline or who had losses due to market supply chain disruptions due to COVID-19 and face additional significant market costs. According to Davisson, eligible products include specialty and non-specialty crops, wool, livestock and dairy.

"The demand for certain products has dipped due to the pandemic and many of our farmers have taken a hit," Davisson said. "It's important this direct relief is provided to our hardworking neighbors so they can continue feeding the nation."

Applications for the Coronavirus Food Assistance Program are open through Aug. 28 and available through the Farm Service Agency at local USDA Service Centers. For more information including eligibility requirements and finding local service centers, visit farmers.gov/cfap.

Additionally, the USDA is supporting agricultural producers by purchasing $3 billion in fresh produce, dairy and meat to be distributed to food banks, community and faith-based organizations, and other nonprofits who serve those in need.

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State Rep. Stephen Bartels (R-Eckerty) represents House District 74,
which includes portions of Spencer, Dubois, Perry, Crawford and Orange counties.
Click here to download a high-resolution photo.

State Rep. Steve Davisson (R-Salem) represents House District 73, which includes
Washington County, and portions of Jackson, Lawrence, Orange, Clark and Harrison counties.

Click 
here to download a high-resolution photo.