Saunders: Help available to farmers who suffered losses due to pandemic

Posted by: Lydia Kirschner  | Friday, June 12, 2020 11:07 am

STATEHOUSE (June 12, 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 Rep. Tom Saunders (R-Lewisville).

Saunders 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.

"The COVID-19 outbreak caused a lot of strain and financial hardships for our farmers," Saunders said. "Many farmers are struggling with profit losses from the drop in demand of their products, and these payments could help them recover."

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. Eligible products include specialty and non-specialty crops, wool, livestock and dairy.

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. Tom Saunders (R-Lewisville) represents House District 54,

which includes Henry County and portions of Rush and Wayne counties.

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