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Drought Assistance Available for Area Producers

September 14th

The USDA recently announced two programs to help farmers dealing with ongoing drought conditions.

The Livestock Forage Program provides payment to eligible livestock producers who have covered livestock, and are also producers of grazed forages that have suffered drought. For northwest Iowa, the forage include native and improved pastureland with permanent vegetative cover, and short and long season small grains planted specifically for grazing. The losses must have occurred in the grazing period and crop year 2021.

Counties eligible for the LFP include Buena Vista, Cherokee, Clay, O'Brien, and Pocahontas. Affected livestock producers should contact their local Farm Services Agency office to set up an appointment if they would like to apply for the assistance. The deadline to file is January 30th of 2022.

USDA has also authorized emergency haying and grazing of CRP acres to provide relief to livestock producers in areas affected by drought. Counties qualify when they are designated in the severe drought level, according to the U.S. Drought Monitor, or if the county FSA requests emergency haying and grazing status, which is documented 40-percent or greater loss of forage production due to a disaster event.

Producers should contact their local FSA office to verify their county is eligible, and to obtain a modified conservation plan.