Morgan County legislators announce help available to farmers who suffered losses due to pandemic

Posted by: Wade Coggeshall  | Friday, July 10, 2020

STATEHOUSE (July 10, 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 Morgan County lawmakers.

State Rep. Peggy Mayfield (R-Martinsville) 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.

"This pandemic has negatively impacted so many sectors of our economy, including agriculture," Mayfield said. "The Coronavirus Food Assistance Program should lessen the financial stress our farmers may be feeling as we continue to recover from this crisis."

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

"Many farmers are facing the challenges of having less demand for their products after parts of our economy were restricted during this public health emergency," said Baird, member of the House Agriculture and Rural Development Committee. "But they continue to provide the food on our tables and in our grocery stores. Their struggles are not invisible, and this program supports our critical food supply chain."

State Rep. John Young (R-Franklin) said 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.

"Indiana's agriculture industry is a critical part of our daily lives," Young said. "From food to textiles and more, we depend on the products and services from Hoosier farmers. This financial relief is important in keeping our economy strong and moving forward."

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. Peggy Mayfield (R-Martinsville) represents House District 60,
which includes portions of Morgan and Monroe counties.
She is the assistant majority floor leader and serves on the
House Ways and Means, Public Policy and Insurance committees.
Click here for a high-resolution photo.

State Rep. Beau Baird (R-Greencastle) represents House District 44, which includes
all of Putnam County and portions of Clay, Morgan, Owen and Parke counties.
Click here to download a high-resolution photo.

State Rep. John Young (R-Franklin) represents House District 47,
which includes portions of Johnson and Morgan counties.
Click here to download a high-resolution photo.