Commodity, Crop Insurance & Credit Programs


How Well Is the Farm Credit System Serving Young, Beginning, and Small Farmers?

June 17, 2016

One hundred years after Congress first created the Farm Credit System (FCS), a national network of financial institutions owned by farmers and their cooperatives and focused on providing credit to farmers, FCS remains an important source of capital for young, beginning, and small farmers across the country. Last week, the Farm Credit Administration (the regulatory […]

New Rules for USDA Local Food Enterprise Loans

June 7, 2016

  Access to capital is important for all small businesses, including the food and farm businesses that bring locally and regionally produced food into rural communities, schools, and markets. Fortunately, there is a federal loan guarantee program, the Business and Industry (B&I) Loan Guarantee Program, which specifically supports these types of local entrepreneurs. Qualified projects […]

Inter-Agency Blockages Threaten to Halt Further Progress on Organic Crop Insurance

June 3, 2016

Editor’s Note: For more information on the state of organic agriculture, see this article’s sister post: “Consumer Sentiment and Supply Scalability Will Determine Future of Organic Price Premiums“ In just one year’s time, the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) Risk Management Agency (RMA) has more than doubled the number of organic crops that are able to […]

USDA Report Shows Organic Crop Insurance Losses Roughly Track Conventional

May 18, 2016

Organic producers, according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) National Organic Program (NOP), are limited to farming according to a set of practices and standards that must demonstrate a commitment to protecting natural resources and conserving biodiversity. They also may only use NOP-approved substances (e.g., herbicides, fertilizers, etc.). Given organic agriculture’s adherence to a more […]

$8.7 Million Available for Risk Management Education and Targeted States Programs

May 6, 2016

The Federal Crop Insurance Program, managed by the Risk Management Agency (RMA), provides subsidized coverage through private insurance companies to over $100 billion worth of agricultural products across 298 million acres. Despite a seemingly high level of farmer participation overall, many underserved, organic, diversified, and specialty crop farmers lack information about and access to insurance […]

Farm Storage Loans Expanded to Help Farmers Reach Local Food Markets

April 29, 2016

Small and mid-scale family farms operating in burgeoning local and regional food markets received some welcome news from the USDA today

The Contract Price Addendum: A Good Risk Management Tool for Certified Organic and Transitioning Producers?

March 3, 2016

The Risk Management Agency (RMA) has recently announced an important update to the Contract Price Addendum (CPA) — transitioning to organic acres will now be eligible. With this change have come a flurry of questions about CPA and how it works, including “What are CPAs?”, “Is my crop eligible for this?”, and “Should I use […]

Can USDA Support for Transitioning Organic Crops Spur the Market?

February 19, 2016

Interest in organic products has boomed over the last several years, between 2004 and 2016 sales of organic food more than tripled (from $11.1 billion to $39 billion), but farmers are finding it difficult to keep up with demand. Part of this difficulty stems from the time and expense of transitioning farmland from conventional to […]

Expanded USDA Microloans Program Increases Opportunity for Small and Beginning Farmers

January 25, 2016

Access to credit continues to be an urgent need for farmers across the country, especially for small and beginning farmers. Starting a new farm is not unlike starting any other small business–it can require significant upfront capital to get off the ground. USDA recently announced exciting changes to their Microloan Program, including launching a new […]

10 Ways USDA Can Address Climate Change in 2016

December 30, 2015

The new year presents a final window of opportunity for the Administration to act upon climate change

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