The Farm Bill's 8-Week Progress Report

USDA briefs farmers and ranchers on the progress made in implementing the 2014 Farm Bill

Published on: Apr 4, 2014

Title I: Commodity Programs
• Supplemental Agriculture Disaster Assistance: USDA will publish a final rule to implement the disaster assistance provisions and begin sign-up by April 15, 2014.
• County and Regional Loan Rates: USDA issued a press release on March 28, 2014 announcing county and regional loan rates.
• Extension of Programs:  On March 28, 2014, FSA published on the Federal Register notices for the extension of the following programs:  (1) Marketing Assistance Loans; (2) Milk Income Loss Contract; (3) Dairy Indemnity Payment Program; (4) Non-Insured Crop Disaster Assistance Program; and (5) Sugar.
• Dairy Forward Pricing Program:  Final rule published on March 21, 2014, that re-established the Dairy Forward Pricing Program.

Title II: Conservation
• Conservation Programs:  Applications are currently being accepted for the Conservation Stewardship Program and Environmental Quality Incentives Program.

Title III: Trade
• Market Access Program:  During the week of April 7, 2014, the Foreign Agricultural Service will announce 2014 MAP funding.
• Foreign Market Development Cooperator Program:  During the week of April 7, 2014, FAS will announce 2014 FMD funding.

Title V: Credit
• Farm Loan Programs/Direct Farm Ownership:  On February 7, 2014, FSA implemented changes in the interest rate on Direct Farm Ownership loans that are made in conjunction with other lenders.
• Modifications to Farm Loan Programs:  On March 24, 2014, FSA issued a news release in announcing changes to Farm Loan Programs as part of the Farm Bill.
• Microloans:  On March 26, 2014, FSA issued an agency directive implementing non-discretionary microloan provisions.

Title VI: Rural Development
• Value Added Producer Grants: On March 25, 2014, Rural Development published a notice in the Federal Register extending the application period for Fiscal Year 2013 and 2014 funding for VAPG, with up to $25.5 million available for these grants.

Title VII: Research
• Organic Agriculture Research and Extension Initiative: On March 17, 2014, NIFA released a Notice of Funding Availability for the Organic Agriculture Research and Extension Initiative, with $20 million available in FY 2014.
• Specialty Crop Research Initiative: On March 17, 2014, NIFA released a Notice of Funding Availability for the Specialty Crop Research Initiative, with $76.8 million available in FY 2014.

Title X: Horticulture
• Plant Pest and Disease Management and Disaster Prevention: On April 3, 2014, USDA announced $48.1 million in funding for 383 projects to help prevent the introduction or spread of plan pests and diseases.

Title XI: Crop Insurance
• Premium Amounts for Catastrophic Risk Protection: During the first week of April, the Risk Management Agency will issue documents to revise the premium rates charged for CAT coverage to be based on the average historical "loss ratio" plus a reasonable reserve.