The Farm Bill deadline has been extended again. The new deadline date is Tuesday, April 7. A decision to extend the deadline yet again is likely due to reports that farmers have not yet been making elections at local FSA offices. Decisions must be made by April 7 in order to receive 2014 commodity program payments.
However, this secondary extension does allow you to use the most available crop and yield information when making an election. This article from FarmDoc Daily will help as you analyze all available information and make your selections.
All currently available data has been loaded into the Agricultural Price Analysis System (APAS) which is available here. After selecting a county, APAS Sample Farm section will provide expected payments from Agricultural Risk Coverage - County Option (ARC-CO), ARC - Individual Coverage (ARC-IC) and Price Loss Coverage (PLC).
In most cases, a use of either ARC-CO or PLC, or a combination of ARC-CO and PLC will have higher payments than ARC-IC. ARC-IC can have higher payments in unique conditions. These conditions include:
- One program crop. More program crops tend to make it harder to trigger ARC-IC payments because ARC-IC averages revenue across crops when calculating its guarantee.
- Variable yields. ARC-IC works best when yields are extremely variable. A prime case is river bottom ground in which yields are usually high but suffer in flood years.
- One Farm Service Agency (FSA) farm. ARC-IC calculates one guarantee and revenue calculation for all FSA farms enrolled in ARC-IC. Having more FSA farms in ARC-IC results in average revenues across all the FSA farms being used to trigger payments. Average revenue across multiple farms tends to vary less than revenue for an individual farm.
Again, the deadline for decisions is April 7. Not making a decision by then will results in no 2014 commodity program payments.
Make sure you visit all available resources (check here!) and make your decisions quickly!