Deadline approaching to sign up for disaster insurance on 2008 crops

The deadlines for the Farm Service Agency to accept applications under the Noninsured Crop Disaster Assistance Program (NAP) for 2008 crops have been established by the Kansas State FSA Committee.

The application closing date of Dec. 1 applies to the following crops: all grasses plus alfalfa, apricots, asparagus, blueberries, caneberries (blackberries and raspberries), cherries, clover, grapes, lespedeza, honey, mixed forage, nectarines, oats, peaches, plums, strawberries and vetch.

Crops eligible for NAP benefits are limited to those not insurable in the county and are produced for food or fiber.

Included as eligible crops are floricultural, ornamental nursery, Christmas trees, turf grass sod, industrial crops, seed crops, aquaculture (including ornamental fish), and forage crops for livestock (mechanically harvested or grazed).

Interested producers who may wish to participate in the NAP program must visit their local FSA office to complete an application for coverage and pay the applicable service fee by the applicable sales closing date for the specific crop.

Administrative service fees are collected in order to help offset the cost of implementing the program and range from $100 per crop per administrative county not to exceed $300 per producer per administrative county with a $900 maximum fee for multi-county producers.

In the event that a producer does suffer a loss on their particular crop, a notice of loss (CCC-576) must be filed with the local FSA office within 15 calendar days after the disaster occurrence, or the date the loss becomes apparent to the producer.

Once the notice of loss has been approved and production evidence collected, the producer must then file an application for payment.

This is done at the local FSA office as well and must be filed prior to the immediately subsequent crop year acreage report date for the specific crop.

Producers are responsible for providing accurate and complete information. This includes timely certifying the unit?s planted acreage and production with FSA.

In general, acreage reporting deadlines are June 1 for small grain crops, and the earlier of Aug. 1 or 15 days prior to the onset of harvest or grazing for all other crops.

Production reporting deadlines are no later than the immediately subsequent crop year acreage reporting date for the crop. It?s always important to check with the local FSA office to determine what the acreage and or production reporting deadlines are for each specific crop.

When required, producers shall provide to FSA verifiable or reliable production evidence for the crop by practice, type and variety, and it must be provided in a manner that can be easily understood.

Producers shall maintain their production evidence for three years after the crop year it is initially certified.

This coverage entitles eligible producers to a payment of 55 percent of an average market price for the commodity if a natural disaster caused at least a 50 percent production loss or greater of an eligible crop.

Producers are limited to $100,000 in benefits per person per crop year, they must not exceed the $2 million gross revenue provisions, and they must comply with conservation compliance provisions in order to be determined eligible.

Bill Harmon is executive director of the Marion County FSA office.

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