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       November 5, 2018 Ballots mailed       December 3, 2018 Last day to return ballots

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2017 Wildfires and Hurricanes Indemnity Program (WHIP)

Mississippi agricultural producers of crops directly affected by Hurricane Harvey and/or Hurricane Nate in 2017 now may apply for assistance to help recover and rebuild their farming operations. The 2017 Wildfires and Hurricanes Indemnity Program (2017 WHIP), authorized by Congress by the Bipartisan Budget Act of 2018, provides disaster assistance to agricultural producers to offset losses from hurricanes and wildfires during the 2017 crop year.

Eligible crops, trees, bushes, or vines, located in a county declared in a Presidential Emergency Disaster Declaration or Secretarial Disaster Designation as a primary county are eligible for assistance if the producer suffered a loss as a result of a 2017 hurricane. Five Mississippi Counties were issued a Presidential Emergency Disaster Declaration due to Hurricane Nate, which affected crops in production in counties along the Mississippi Gulf Coast October 6, through October 10, 2017. These counites include Harrison, Hancock, George, Greene, and Jackson. No Mississippi county was issued a Secretarial Disaster Designation due to a named hurricane. However, crop losses that occurred in a county without a Presidential Emergency Disaster Declaration or a Secretarial Disaster Designation may be eligible for 2017 if producer provides supporting documentation from which FSA can determine the loss was directly caused by a qualifying disaster event. Eligibility is determined by Farm Service Agency (FSA) county committees.

For applications to be considered timely filed, producers must apply no later than Friday, November 16, 2018. To help expedite payments, a producer who does not have records established at the local USDA service center are encouraged to do so early in the process. To establish a record for a farm, a producer needs:

  • Proof of identity: driver’s license and Social Security number/card;
  • Copy of recorder deed, survey plat, rental, or lease agreement of the land. A producer does not have to own property to participate in FSA programs;
  • Corporation, estate, or trust documents, if applicable
  • Producers will be asked to provide verifiable and reliable production records. If a producer is unable to provide production records, USDA will calculate the yield based on the county average yield. A producer with this information on file does not need to provide the information again.

For more information on FSA disaster assistance programs, please contact your local USDA service center or visit https://www.farmers.gov/recover/whip.


Specialty Crop and Organic Producers

If America is to remain food secure and continue exporting food to the world, FSA must also support new types of farming who have not traditionally participated in FSA programs, such as niche operations, specialty crop, and organic producers. FSA's programs, such as Noninsured Crop Disaster Assistance Program provide greater coverage for losses when natural disasters affect specialty crops such as vegetables, fruits, mushrooms, floriculture, ornamental nursery, aquaculture, turf grass, ginseng, honey, syrup, and energy crops. The FSA microloan is also a viable source for specialty crop producers to obtain credit to help start or expand their operation.

To help support expansion of organic products made in rural America, FSA has strengthened programs that support organic agriculture. One example is the Farm Storage Facility Loan to build or upgrade storage facilities for organic commodities, including cold storage, grain bins, bulk tanks and drying and handling equipment. Learn more about help for Organic Farming.

We encourage you to contact your local office or USDA Service Center to learn more about all FSA programs and the information you will need for a complete application.


Contact Us

USDA Farm Service Agency
6311 Ridgewood Road, Suite W100
Jackson, MS 39211-2035
601-965-4300