By: Ben Brown, OSU Extension Program Manager- Farm Management Program
WASHINGTON, June 20, 2019 – Farmers who planted cover crops on prevented plant acres will be permitted to hay, graze or chop those fields earlier than November this year, the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) announced today. USDA’s Risk Management Agency (RMA) adjusted the 2019 final haying and grazing date from November 1 to September 1 to help farmers who were prevented from planting because of flooding and excess rainfall this spring.
“We recognize farmers were greatly impacted by some of the unprecedented flooding and excessive rain this spring, and we made this one-year adjustment to help farmers with the tough decisions they are facing this year,” said Under Secretary for Farm Production and Conservation Bill Northey. “This change will make good stewardship of the land easier to accomplish while also providing an opportunity to ensure quality forage is available for livestock this fall.”
RMA has also determined that silage, haylage and baleage should be treated in the same manner as haying and grazing for this year. Producers can hay, graze or cut cover crops for silage, haylage or baleage on prevented plant acres on or after September 1 and still maintain eligibility for their full 2019 prevented planting indemnity.
“These adjustments have been made for 2019 only,” said RMA Administrator Martin Barbre. “RMA will evaluate the prudence of a permanent adjustment moving forward.”
Other USDA Programs
Other USDA agencies are also assisting producers with delayed or prevented planting. USDA’s Farm Service Agency (FSA) is extending the deadline to report prevented plant acres in select counties, and USDA’s Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) is holding special sign-ups for the Environmental Quality Incentives Program in certain states to help with planting cover crops on impacted lands. Contact your local FSA and NRCS offices to learn more.
Read our frequently asked questions to learn more about prevented plant.
Crop insurance is sold and delivered solely through private crop insurance agents. A list of crop insurance agents is available at all USDA Service Centers and online at the RMA Agent Locator. Learn more about crop insurance and the modern farm safety net at rma.usda.gov.
Below is a table to use to estimate the impact on prevented planting payments determined by when the producer planted the cover crop and when he or she intends to hay or graze the cover crop. This is for 2019 only.
Things that were not covered in the press conference and still are not clarified:
1) What is considered a “potentially harvestable crop for minimal MFP payment purposes”
2) RMA did not make a statement on the use of the harvest price instead of the projected price in prevented planting indemnities.
3) RMA did not make a statement on whether certain counties will be eligible for a higher prevented planting guarantee under the federal disaster bill.