In accordance with the Regulatory Freeze Pending Review memo issued by the White House on January 20, the United States Department of Agriculture has suspended the $2.3 billion of additional assistance to the Coronavirus Food Assistance Program put in place during the final days of the Trump Administration.
The Trump administration had previously announced on January 15 providing additional assistance of CFAP expanding eligibility for some agricultural producers and commodities as well as updating payments to accurately compensate some producers who already applied for the program. The expanded eligibility was targeted primarily for contract pork and poultry producers and others previously excluded from the relief payments.
It should be noted that Farm Service Agency offices will continue to accept applications during the evaluation period although no payments will be made while the program is reviewed. The supplemental CFAP payments (January 15 additional assistance) were to build upon the $23.6 billion in the assistance provided in Rounds 1 and 2 of CFAP. USDA’s Farm Service Agency will still continue to accept new or modified CFAP applications from eligible producers from January 19 through February 26, 2021.
In a notice on the Farm Service Agency website the Biden administration stated “In the coming days, USDA and the Biden Administration intend to take additional steps to bring relief and support to all parts of food and agriculture during the coronavirus pandemic, including by ensuring producers have access to the capital, risk management tools, disaster assistance, and other federal resources.”
Farm Office Team Note: It is not irregular for a new Presidential Administration to freeze rulemaking at the start of their administration as the transition occurs from one administration to the next. Our team will be monitoring the situation and will provide updates. Make sure to register for the next Farm Office Live webinars on February 10 & 12 at which time updates will be given on this issue and many more. Register at: https://farmoffice.osu.edu/farmofficelive
Coronavirus Food Assistance Program – Additional Assistance. Access at: https://www.farmers.gov/cfap
Regulatory Freeze Pending Review. Access at: https://www.whitehouse.gov/briefing-room/presidential-actions/2021/01/20/regulatory-freeze-pending-review/
USDA Offers Additional Assistance for Certain Producers Through Coronavirus Food Assistance Program https://www.usda.gov/media/press-releases/2021/01/15/usda-offers-additional-assistance-certain-producers-through