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USDA issues safety-net payments to farmers

Due to market downturns during the 2015 crop year, the U.S. Department of Agriculture has announced that many of the 1.7 million farms that enrolled in either the Agriculture Risk Coverage (ARC) or Price Loss Coverage (PLC) programs will receive safety-net payments.

"This fall, USDA will be making more than $7 billion in payments under the ARC-County and PLC programs to assist participating producers, which will account for more than 10 percent of USDA's projected 2016 net farm income. These payments will help provide reassurance to America's farm families, who are standing strong against low commodity prices compounded by unfavorable growing conditions in many parts of the country," Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack said in a prepared statement.

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According to a USDA news release, the 2014 Farm Bill authorized the ARC-PLC safety net to trigger and provide financial assistance only when decreases in revenues or crop prices, respectively, occur. The ARC and PLC programs primarily allow producers to continue to produce for the market by making payments on a percentage of historical base production, limiting the impact on production decisions.

For more information, producers are encouraged to visit their local Farm Service Agency office. To find a local FSA office, visit http://offices.usda.gov.

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