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Ohio State Office

State Executive Director

Mark VanHoose

Mark VanHoose

Read Mark VanHoose '

State Office Address

200 North High St
Room 540
Columbus, OH 43215
(614) 255-2441

Welcome to the USDA Ohio Farm Service Agency Website

Agriculture in Ohio is a major industry. One in eight Ohioans are employed in the food and agriculture industry which contributes over $124 billion to the state's economic growth. Ohio's top commodities include: soybeans, corn, tomatoes, swiss cheese and egg production.


USDA Extends the General Conservation Reserve Program (CRP) Signup Period

The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) is extending the Conservation Reserve Program (CRP) General Signup period, which had previously been announced as ending on Feb. 12, 2021.  USDA will continue to accept offers as it takes this opportunity for the incoming Administration to evaluate ways to increase enrollment.  Under the previous Administration, incentives and rental payment rates were reduced resulting in an enrollment shortfall of over 4 million acres. 

CRP is a land conservation program administered by FSA. In exchange for a yearly rental payment, farmers enrolled in the program agree to remove environmentally sensitive land from agricultural production and plant species that will improve environmental health and quality.  The long-term goal of the program is to re-establish valuable land cover to help improve water quality, prevent soil erosion, and reduce loss of wildlife habitat. 

Signup for CRP Grassland acres follows, from March 15, 2021, to April 23, 2021.  Both CRP General Signup and CRP Grasslands programs are competitive and provide annual rental payments for land devoted to conservation purposes.  

General CRP signup includes increased opportunities for enrollment of wildlife habitat through Ohio's State Acres For Wildlife Enhancement (SAFE) initiative.  FSA offers additional conservation opportunities for enrollment of wildlife habitat through Ohio's two SAFE initiatives.  Signup for both SAFE initiatives will be taken through FSA’s General Signup process which will be held on an annual basis for the life of the 2018 Farm Bill.  

The first SAFE initiative is the SAFE Pollinator and Monarch initiative which is aimed at creating conservation practices to address a high priority through restoring pollinator and monarch vital habitats.  Ohio SAFE seeks to enroll cropland in CRP Practice CP38 for 10-15 years to benefit Monarch butterflies and other essential pollinators. View FSA's Pollinator and Monarch SAFE initiative fact sheet for more details and information.

The second Ohio SAFE initiative is called the Upland Bird initiative which is aimed at creating specialized habitat to address a high priority for wildlife, focusing on maintaining and increasing populations of priority game bird species by specifically targeting declining pheasant and quail populations in areas of greatest impact.  View FSA's Upland Bird SAFE initiative fact sheet for more details and information.  

For more information on CRP General Signup, Continuous CRP, CREP, Grasslands or SAFE initiative's, call your county FSA office to schedule an appointment.


Enrollment Open for Commodity Crop Safety Net for 2021 Production Season; Producers Urged to Begin Process

Farmers can now make elections and enroll in the Agriculture Risk Coverage (ARC) and Price Loss Coverage (PLC) programs for the 2021 crop year. The signup period is open through March 15, 2021 and producers are encouraged to begin working with their county FSA office now to complete the paperwork.  Although program election (choosing ARC or PLC) changes for 2021 are optional, enrollment (signed contract) is required for each year of the program. If a producer has a multi-year contract on the farm and makes a program election change for 2021, he or she needs to sign a new contract.

If you would like to learn more about the ARC and PLC programs, then join The Ohio State University Extension Service as they will host 1 additional webinar to discuss the ARC/PLC decision for the 2021 program year including updates on current market outlook and decision-tool calculators available to evaluate options and deadlines. There is no cost to attend these meetings, but registration is required.  To register visit: go.osu.edu/arcplc2021.  The Ohio State Extension Service's last ARC/PLC webinar is scheduled for Thursday, February 25, 2021 from 9:00 am – 11:00 am EDT. 

The previous ARC/PLC webinars were recorded for those unable to join the OSU Extension Service and are available to view at: https://farmoffice.osu.edu/events/archived-videos and at: https://aede.osu.edu/research/osu-farm-management/2018-farm-bill/2021-meetings.


Coronavirus Food Assistance Program Additional Assistance Announced

County Farm Service Agency offices across the state will be working to implement Coronavirus Food Assistance Program (CFAP) additional assistance that was approved as part of a recently enacted COVID-19 assistance package, as well as some USDA discretionary program changes. Details regarding this new assistance and updated program parameters can be found at farmers.gov/cfap. A news release that outlines the changes can be found here.


Wondering Whether Your FSA Office is Open for In-Person Appointments?

Updated Service Center Status and Continued Service

In response to COVID-19, many USDA Service Centers in Ohio are restricting in-person office visits. However, all Service Centers remain open for business and our staff will be in the office and will work with our producers by phone, by email, or by using other online tools.

All Service Center visitors wishing to conduct business FSA should call ahead and schedule an appointment. Service Centers that are open for appointments will pre-screen visitors based on health concerns or recent travel, and visitors must adhere to social distancing guidelines. Visitors are also required to wear a face covering during their appointment.

To find out whether your FSA office is open for in-person appointments or only available for phone appointments, go to this clickable map and select your county for details.


Are you interested in FSA's Loan program and have questions? Check out FSA's Guide to Farm Loans.

This guidebook simplifies information on the types of farm loans available; how to apply for a guaranteed loan, direct loan, or land contract guarantee; what you can expect once you submit your application; and most importantly, your rights and responsibilities as an FSA customer.

Farm Loan Current Interest Rates


FSA Offers New Loans for Portable Farm Storage and Handling Equipment. Can Help Producers Get Products to Market Quickly

FSA provides a new financing option to help farmers purchase portable storage and handling equipment. The loans, which now include a smaller microloan option with lower down payments, are designed to help producers, including new, small and mid-sized producers, grow their businesses and markets. For more information, check out FSA's Farm Storage Facility Loan Program.

Commodity Credit Corporation (CCC) Current Interest Rates


Are you interested in getting started into farming and need assistance that connects farm entrepreneurs with programs, services and resources available

Check out USDA's New and Beginning Farmers Website.

The site features advice and guidance on everything a new farm business owner needs to know, from writing a business plan, to obtaining a loan to grow their business, to filing taxes as a new small business owner, starting or expanding an operation, developing new markets, supporting more effective farming and conservation practices, and having access to relevant training and education opportunities. By answering a series of questions about their operation, farmers can use the site’s Discovery Tool to build a personalized set of recommendations of USDA programs and services that may meet their needs.

To learn more about USDA's New and Beginning Farmers website, visit www.usda.gov/newfarmers.


Important Dates to Remember

  • Feb. 15 ---- President's Day Holiday. FSA Offices Closed.
  • Mar. 1 ----- Primary Nesting Season begins.
  • Mar. 5 ----- Deadline to apply for Quality Loss Adjustment (QLA) program.
  • Mar. 15 --- Agriculture Risk Coverage (ARC) and Price Loss Coverage (PLC) election and enrollment application deadline for 2021 crop season.
  • Mar. 15 --- CRP Grasslands sign-up begins. Contact the FSA office as the deadline is April 23, 2021.
  • Mar. 15 --- Deadline to obtain 2021 NAP coverage on spring planted crops.
  • Mar. 15 --- Deadline to purchase NAP coverage for hemp. NAP will be available for 2021 to provide insurance-type coverage due to adverse weather conditions. NAP provides coverage against loss for hemp grown for fiber, grain, seed, or cannabidiol (CBD) for the 2021 crop year where no permanent federal crop insurance program is available.
  • Mar. 31 --- Final Availability for 2020 crop wheat, barley, oats, honey loans and LDPs. 


Ongoing

  • Reports of Failed Acreage must be filed with the County Office before disposition of the crop.
  • Reports of Prevented Planting Acreage must be filed with the County Office no later than 15 calendar days after the final planting date for that county and producers of hand-harvested crops and certain perishable crops must notify FSA within 72 hours of when a loss becomes apparent.

Stay Current on FSA News - Sign-up to receive free electronic news from your FSA County Office

GovDelivery is a free email service that enables Farm Service Agency county offices to send you bulletins, deadline reminders, newsletters and texts instantly. For text updates, contact your FSA county office. For bulletins and newsletters via email - sign up now to receive information about program details, signup dates and deadlines. Ask about FSA's GovDelivery electronic news and text updates and how to sign-up at your FSA County Office.