Direct Assistance to Farmers through the Coronavirus Food Assistance Program (CFAP)

USDA Reopens Coronavirus Food Assistance Program (CFAP 2) Sign-Up

Update as of March 26, 2021

After putting the Coronavirus Food Assistance Program (CFAP2) on hold pending review over the past two months, USDA announced today its Pandemic Assistance to Producers initiative, a $6BN program designed to reach a broader spectrum of recipients impacted by COVID-19.  The four parts of the program are outlined HERE. Additional details on the specifics of the program under Part 1 and Part 2 will be forthcoming this spring and shared accordingly.

Under parts 3 and 4, USDA will re-open the sign-up for CFAP 2 applications beginning April 5, 2021 for 60 days.  Walnuts remain under the sales commodity category and revised applications may now include insurance indemnities, Noninsured Crop Disaster Assistance Program payments, and Wildfire and Hurricane Indemnity Program Plus payments, as previously announced prior to the regulatory freeze.  Additional details can be found on farmers.gov/cfap.

The CWC continues to advocate for walnuts inclusion in any/all programs that provide relief to our growers, in the form of direct payments, grants, purchase programs, and COVID-19 mitigation measures, among others. The CWC has requested expansion of CFAP 2 to include eligibility for 2020 sales for direct payments to producers.  As USDA indicated in the announcement, CFAP expansion remains under consideration with more details to come this spring.

 

 

Update as of January 28, 2021

 
USDA has announced a temporary freeze in processing Coronavirus Food Assistance Program (CFAP) payments following a White House memo detailing a review of current federal spending. Per USDA, the new administration intends to restructure financial support to agricultural sectors affected by the pandemic and natural disasters.
 
Note: during this review process, USDA Farm Service Agency (FSA) offices will continue to accept applications under the expanded/updated eligibility and payment system as announced on January 15, 2021. Growers who need to modify existing applications due to those updates can contact the local FSA offices by February 26, 2021.
 
For more information, please visit https://www.farmers.gov/cfap or contact your local FSA offices.
 

USDA Expands Coronavirus Food Assistance Program

USDA announced on January 15, 2021, additional assistance to agricultural producers and commodities by expanding eligibility under the Coronavirus Food Assistance Program (CFAP) as well as updating payments to some producers who had already applied.

IMPACT ON WALNUT GROWERS: FSA previously used five payment gradations based on the 2019 calendar year sales for the growers (https://walnuts.org/cfap/)

Under the updated payment plan, growers will be able to add any 2019 crop insurance indemnities, the Noninsured Crop Disaster Assistance Program (NAP) and Wildfire and Hurricane Indemnity Program Plus (WHIP+) payments they received to the 2019 calendar year sales to calculate their payments.

DEADLINE: Growers who need to modify existing applications due to these updates can contact USDA’s Farm Service Agency (FSA) between January 19 and February 26, 2021.

For more information, please visit https://www.farmers.gov/cfap or contact your local FSA offices.

On September 18, 2020 the USDA announced the details of the second Coronavirus Food Assistance Program (CFAP 2). USDA’s Farm Service Agency (FSA) will be administering the program and will begin accepting applications Monday, September 21 through December 11, 2020.

FSA hosted a webinar on October 1st, 2020 to go over the details of the Coronavirus Food Assistance Program 2.0 (CFAP 2).  The webinar was designed to help growers learn more about CFAP 2 and how to apply for this assistance.

Growers who missed the webinar can view the recording by clicking on the link below:

CFAP 2 Webinar Recording

Presentation Agenda:
  *   PowerPoint overview of CFAP 2
  *   Q & A

Payment Calculations:

Walnuts are part of the specialty crops in the Sales Commodities category. Payment calculations will use a sales-based approach, where producers are paid based on five payment gradations associated with their calendar year 2019 sales. More details are available at Farmers.gov/cfap

Payments for tree nuts will be based on the producer’s 2019 sales of eligible commodities in a declining block format using the following payment factors, and will be equal to

2019 Sales Range

Percent Payment Factor for the Producer’s 2019 Sales of Eligible Commodities Falling in the Range

$0 to $49,999

$50,000 to $99,999

$100,000 to $499,999

$500,000 to $999,999

Sales over $1 million

10.6%

9.9%

9.7%

9.0%

8.8%

USDA Farm Service Agency will be hosting a webinar on Thursday, September 24th at 3pm Eastern, and growers can register here. Additional resources can be found via the Farmers.gov/cfap website and Frequently Asked Questions.

Walnuts Among Additional Commodities Eligible for the Coronavirus Food Assistance Program (CFAP)

On August 11, 2020, USDA announced additional commodities eligible for the CFAP funding under category #1. Following strong efforts by the California Walnut Commission and industry members, walnuts were included in the list of the additional eligible commodities after not being included in the initial list.

Per the announcement, walnut growers will be eligible for a payment of $0.26/lb of sale losses under category #1. Only the losses, as certified by respective handler(s), during the period of January 15, 2020 to April 15, 2020, will be considered. USDA has now extended the application deadline to September 11, 2020.

Webinar

USDA’s Farm Service Agency (FSA) organized a webinar on August 14, 2020, for the industry to provide details on application requirements. Links to the webinar presentation and recording can be found below. Growers are encouraged to review the worksheets on the website, under the box labeled ‘CFAP Applications Generator and Payment Calculator’. In the webinar, the FSA team walked everyone through them. The link can be found here: https://www.farmers.gov/cfap

Here are links to the presentation and recording.

On May 19, 2020, the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) announced the details of direct assistance to farmers through the Coronavirus Food Assistance Program (CFAP). USDA’s Farm Service Agency (FSA) began accepting applications from agricultural producers who have suffered losses. You can find your local FSA office by visiting:

https://offices.sc.egov.usda.gov/locator/app?state=ca&agency=fsa

New FSA customers should contact 877-508-8364 to work one on one with FSA staff to become established.

Producers of specialty crops are eligible for CFAP payments in the following three categories:

  1. Had crops that suffered a five percent-or-greater price decline between mid-January and mid-April as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic
  1. Had produce shipped but subsequently spoiled due to loss of marketing channel 
  2. Had shipments that did not leave the farm or mature crops that remained unharvested

FAQ

Q: Are walnut growers eligible for direct payments?

A: Yes. Payments to producers are based on three categories of losses listed above. Walnuts are included in all of the categories.

Q: What is the payment rate for walnut growers?

Commodity

CARES Act Payment Rate for Sales Losses ($/lb)

CARES Act Payment Rate for Product that left the farm but spoiled due to loss of marketing channel ($/lb)

CCC Payment Rate ($/acre)

Walnuts

0.26

0.34

250.60

Commodity

Walnuts

CARES Act Payment Rate for Sales Losses ($/lb)

CARES Act Payment Rate for Product that left the farm but spoiled due to loss of marketing channel ($/lb)

0.45

CCC Payment Rate ($/lb)

0.09

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