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Farmers suffering drought-related crop losses can seek USDA aid

Ray/Clay County USDA Farm Service Agency Executive Director Jarrell Foreman announced Oct. 15 that producers can enroll in the Supplemental Revenue Assistance Payments (SURE) program for 2011 crop year losses beginning Oct. 22. Under the 2008 Farm Bill, SURE authorizes assistance to farmers and ranchers who suffered crop losses caused by natural disasters occurring through Sept. 30, 2011.
“Eligible producers who experienced a 2011 crop loss can contact the Ray/Clay County FSA office to learn more about the SURE program,” said Foreman. “All eligible farmers and ranchers must sign up for 2011 SURE benefits before the June 7, 2013 deadline,” he said.
To qualify for a SURE payment, the producer’s operation must be located in a county, or a contiguous county, that was declared a disaster for 2011 and have at least a 10 percent production loss that affects one crop of economic significance. Producers with agricultural operations located outside a disaster county are eligible for SURE benefits if they had a production loss greater or equal to 50 percent of the normal production on the farm.
In Missouri, all counties received a primary Secretarial Disaster Designation or were contiguous to a county with a Secretarial Disaster Designation during 2011. This means producers in all Missouri counties can apply for SURE benefits as long as all other eligibility requirements are met.
To meet program eligibility requirements, producers must have obtained a policy or plan of insurance for all insurable crops through the Federal Crop Insurance Corporation and obtained Noninsured Crop Disaster Assistance Program (NAP) coverage on non-insurable crops, if available, from FSA. Eligible farmers and ranchers who meet the definition of a socially disadvantaged, limited resource or beginning farmer or rancher do not have to meet this requirement. Forage crops intended for grazing are not eligible for SURE benefits.
For more information on SURE program eligibility requirements contact the Ray/Clay County FSA office at 816-776-5861 extension 2 or visit the website at http://www.fsa.usda.gov/sure.

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