Home Indiana Agriculture News USDA Opens Signup March 23 for Added Causes of Loss Under WHIP+

USDA Opens Signup March 23 for Added Causes of Loss Under WHIP+

SHARE

U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue today announced additional disaster assistance available to agricultural producers, including producers impacted by drought and excess moisture as well as sugar beet growers. Through WHIP+, the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) is helping producers recover from losses related to 2018 and 2019 natural disasters.

USDA’s Farm Service Agency (FSA) will open signup on March 23 for producers to apply for eligible losses of drought (D3 or above) and excess moisture. USDA is also entering into agreements with six sugar beet processing cooperatives to distribute $285 million to grower members of those cooperatives who experienced loss.

“It’s true that farmers and ranchers are no strangers to the impact natural disasters have on their operations, but disaster events the past two years have been atypically widespread, relentless and unforgiving,” Secretary Perdue said. “In some instances, producers have suffered multiple disaster events in one year or in several years back-to-back.  I am pleased that Congress has afforded USDA the authority to continue providing much-needed assistance to producers who have lost so much these last few years. President Trump has the backs of our farmers, and we aim to support them as they recover.”

In June 2019, more than $3 billion was made available through a disaster relief package passed by Congress and signed by President Trump.  In December 2019, Congress passed, and President Trump signed the Further Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2020 that provides an additional $1.5 billion for the continuation of disaster assistance program delivery.

WHIP+ New Qualifying Disaster Events

The bill added excessive moisture and D3 and D4 drought as qualifying losses for WHIP+ assistance.

Beginning March 23, producers who suffered either of these types of loss in 2018 and/or 2019 can apply for WHIP+ assistance at their local FSA office. For drought, a producer is eligible if any area of the county in which the loss occurred was rated D3 (Extreme Drought) or higher on the U.S. Drought Monitor during calendar years 2018 or 2019.

WHIP+ Sugar Beet Loss Assistance

As also directed in the bill, USDA will provide $285 million through sugar beet processing cooperatives to compensate grower members for sugar beet crop losses in 2018 and 2019. Details will be finalized in agreements between USDA and participating sugar beet processing cooperatives. Sugar beet producers who are members of these cooperatives and experienced losses may contact their cooperative for more information about how this sugar beet crop assistance will be administered.

WHIP+ for Quality Loss

In addition, producers have reported widespread crop quality loss from eligible disaster events that results in price deductions or penalties when marketing the damaged crops. The Appropriations bill expands WHIP+ to include assistance for crop quality loss. FSA is gathering data and input from producers and stakeholders regarding the extent and types of quality loss nationwide.

“Providing assistance for quality loss is complicated, and we are actively gathering data and input on how to administer quality loss assistance for producers,” said Farm Production and Conservation Undersecretary Bill Northey.

Eligibility

To be eligible for WHIP+, producers must have suffered losses of certain crops, trees, bushes, or vines in counties with a Presidential Emergency Disaster Declaration or a Secretarial Disaster Designation (primary counties only) for the following named natural disaster events; hurricanes, floods, tornadoes, typhoons, volcanic activity, snowstorms, wildfires, and now excessive moisture that occurred in 2018 or 2019. Also, losses located in a county not designated by the Secretary as a primary county may be eligible if the producer provides documentation showing that the loss was due to a qualifying natural disaster event.

For drought, counties having a D3 or D4 Drought Monitor classification in any portion of the county anytime during calendar year 2018 or 2019 will also be eligible.

Indiana Counties

Adams: 2019 only

Allen: 2019 only

Bartholomew: 2019 only

Benton: 2018 only

Blackford: 2019 only

Boone: 2019 only

Brown: 2019 only

Carroll: 2018 and 2019

Cass: 2019 only

Clark: 2018 and 2019

Clay: 2019 only

Clinton: 2019 only

Crawford: 2018 and 2019

Daviess: 2019 only

Dearborn: 2018 and 2019

Decatur: 2019 only

DeKalb: 2019 only

Delaware: 2019 only

Dubois: 2019 only

Elkhart: 2018 and 2019

Fayette: 2019 only

Floyd: 2018 and 2019

Franklin: 2019 only

Fulton: 2018 and 2019

Gibson: 2018 and 2019

Grant: 2019 only

Greene: 2019 only

Hancock: 2019 only

Harrison: 2018 and 2019

Hendricks: 2019 only

Henry: 2019 only

Howard: 2019 only

Huntington: 2019 only

Jackson: 2019 only

Jasper: 2018 and 2019

Jay: 2019 only

Jefferson: 2018 and 2019

Jennings: 2019 only

Johnson: 2019 only

Knox: 2019 only

Kosciusko: 2018 and 2019

LaGrange: 2019 only

Lake: 2018 only

LaPorte: 2018 and 2019

Lawrence: 2019 only

Madison: 2019 only

Marion: 2019 only

Marshall: 2018 and 2019

Martin: 2019 only

Miami: 2019 only

Monroe: 2019 only

Montgomery: 2019 only

Morgan: 2019 only

Newton: 2018 and 2019

Noble: 2019 only

Ohio: 2018 and 2019

Orange: 2019 only

Owen: 2019 only

Perry: 2018 only

Pike: 2019 only

Porter: 2018 only

Posey: 2019 only

Pulaski: 2018 and 2019

Putnam: 2019 only

Randolph: 2019 only

Ripley: 2019 only

Scott: 2019 only

Spencer: 2018 only

St. Joseph: 2018 and 2019

Starke: 2018 and 2019

Steuben: 2019 only

Sullivan: 2019 only

Switzerland: 2018 and 2019

Tippecanoe: 2019 only

Union: 2019 only

Vanderburgh: 2018 and 2019

Vermillion: 2018 only

Vigo: 2019 only

Wabash: 2018 and 2019

Warren: 2018 only

Warrick: 2018 and 2019

Washington: 2019 only

Wayne: 2019 only

Wells: 2019 only

White: 2018 and 2019

Whitley: 2019 only

A list of counties that received qualifying hurricane declarations and designations is available at farmers.gov/recover/whip-plus. The U.S. Drought Monitor is available at https://droughtmonitor.unl.edu/.

Because livestock losses are covered by other disaster recovery programs offered through FSA, these losses are not eligible for WHIP+.