Ag News

April 30 deadline to sign up for Farm Recovery Block Grants

Georgia Agriculture Commissioner Gary W. Black announced April 3 that the Georgia Farm Recovery Block Grant application deadline is extended to April 30 due to COVID-19.

“We recognize that normal business operations across the state have been disrupted or altered over the past few weeks,” said Commissioner Black. “We want every eligible producer to have an opportunity to complete their application with full confidence, while continuing the critical work of providing food and fiber during these unsettling times.”

The Georgia Department of Agriculture is accepting online applications  for disbursing $347 million in Georgia Farm Recovery Block Grant funds for eligible losses due to Hurricane Michael.  The grant program is for farmers and forest landowners with operations in 95 eligible Georgia counties, who suffered losses to beef, dairy, fruit and vegetable, pecan, poultry, timber, and eligible uninsured irrigation equipment or farm structures as a result of Hurricane Michael. The 95 eligible counties received a USDA disaster designation for the storm.

The federal block grants seek to help recover losses not covered under existing USDA Farm Service Agency programs. This means not all losses a producer experienced due to Hurricane Michael will be eligible. Eligible losses under this grant are:

Beef

Future income losses related to decreased conception rates and mature cow deaths, decreased production due to post-storm effects, and expenses due to increased disease occurrence
 
Dairy
Future income losses related to decreased conception rates and mature cow deaths
 
Fruits & Vegetables
Expenses related to damaged and destroyed production inputs of plasticulture & bareground production
 
Pecans
Future income loss from lost trees
 
Poultry
Damage and destruction of poultry houses (breeder, broiler, and pullet) and lost income due to interruption of business
 
Timber
Damaged and destroyed timberland
 
Uninsured Infrastructure:
Expenses and losses related to general infrastructure and irrigation used in production of an agricultural commodity. This applies to any agricultural commodity that was in the structure or under the irrigation system at the time of the storm and suffered a loss to the commodity.
 

Before you begin the application, we encourage you to view the application worksheet. This document will provide you with a summary of what information you will need to provide. You can view the worksheet by clicking here.

Additionally, you will be required to provide specific documents, all of which are detailed on the application worksheet and are available on the Farm Recovery website. You may also access them below:

To help growers navigate the grant application, the GDA has published a guide offering tips on how to apply and a map indicating eligible counties. Access the guide and all information at www.farmrecovery.com.

Only online applications will be accepted. While mobile phones may be used to sign up and log in, applicants are strongly encouraged to complete the application using a computer to ensure proper upload and attachment of required documents.

All applications must be completed and submitted by April 30, 2020.

For more information about the Farm Recovery Block Grant, please contact GDA at farmrecovery@agr.georgia.gov.

Georgia agriculture suffered a $2.5 billion loss from Hurricane Michael. Under the $3 billion Disaster Relief Act of 2019, USDA earmarked $800 million in block grant funds to aid states impacted by disasters. USDA allocated $347 million for Georgia.