Livestock producers and agricultural lenders in drought-stricken areas of the Dakotas and Montana have a way to estimate the amount of aid they might receive from the Livestock Forage Program (LFP) and how far it will go toward alleviating financial stress.
North Dakota State University has an Excel program that quickly will provide an estimate of payments to date for a generalized scenario, according to Andy Swenson, the NDSU Extension Service’s farm and family resource management specialist. The LFP calculator is at www.ag.ndsu.edu/farmmanagement/farm-bill.
LFP, authorized under the 2014 farm bill, provides assistance to producers for grazing losses caused by drought.
“Payments may increase if the duration and/or intensity of the drought increases,” Swenson says.
Based on the U.S. Drought Monitor, as of the Aug. 1, producers with livestock and pasture in 31 North Dakota counties, 27 South Dakota counties and 17 Montana counties may be eligible for some assistance. Producers in most of these counties may be eligible for payments on four months of forage loss.
LFP eligibility rules require that producers own, lease or be a contract grower of covered livestock during the 60 days prior to the qualifying drought. Producers also must have owned or leased grazing land for the livestock in a county affected by drought.
“The LFP calculator provides a quick estimate but does not consider scenarios where there is grazing in multiple counties, annual forage crops planted specifically for grazing, grazing of federally managed lands impacted by fire, or grazing of multiple pasture types by the same covered livestock,” Swenson says. “Contact your local Farm Service Agency office for complete details and calculations.”
A LFP fact sheet can be found at http://tinyurl.com/LFPFactSheet.
Source: North Dakota State University