COVID-19 Resources for Farmers

 

SCFB State Office Operating Procedure 

The SCFB Products Program is still open for business offering delivery and curbside pickup. Contact the team at 1-800-849-3778.

In case you missed it, you can watch the webinar about SBA programs for farmers here.
Coronavirus Food Assistance Program

President Donald J. Trump and U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue today announced up to an additional $14 billion for agricultural producers who continue to face market disruptions and associated costs because of COVID-19. Signup for the Coronavirus Food Assistance Program (CFAP 2) will begin September 21 and run through December 11, 2020. 

USDA will use funds being made available from the Commodity Credit Corporation of Agriculture (CCC) Charter Act and CARES Act to support row crops, livestock, specialty crops, dairy, aquaculture and many additional commodities. USDA has incorporated improvements in CFAP 2 based from stakeholder engagement and public feedback to better meet the needs of impacted farmers and ranchers. 

Producers can apply for CFAP 2 at USDA’s Farm Service Agency (FSA) county offices. This program provides financial assistance that gives producers the ability to absorb increased marketing costs associated with the COVID-19 pandemic. Producers will be compensated for ongoing market disruptions and assisted with the associated marketing costs.

CFAP 2 payments will be made for three categories of commodities – Price Trigger Commodities, Flat-rate Crops and Sales Commodities.

The Coronavirus Food Assistance Program (CFAP), administered by the USDA, will provide an additional $14 billion in direct payments to deliver relief to America’s farmers and ranchers impacted by the coronavirus pandemic. In addition to this direct support to farmers and ranchers, USDA’s Farmers to Families Food Box program is partnering with regional and local distributors, whose workforces have been significantly impacted by the closure of many restaurants, hotels, and other food service entities, to purchase $3 billion in fresh produce.

Eligibility

There is a payment limitation of $250,000 per person or entity for all commodities combined. Applicants who are corporations, limited liability companies or limited partnerships may qualify for additional payment limits where members actively provide personal labor or personal management for the farming operation. Producers will also have to certify they meet the Adjusted Gross Income limitation of $900,000 unless at least 75 percent or more of their income is derived from farming, ranching or forestry-related activities. Producers must also be in compliance with Highly Erodible Land and Wetland Conservation provisions.

Applying for Assistance

Producers can apply for assistance beginning on September 21, 2020. Additional information and application forms can be found at farmers.gov/cfap. Producers of all eligible commodities will apply through their local FSA office. Documentation to support the producer’s application and certification may be requested. FSA has streamlined the signup process to not require an acreage report at the time of application and a USDA farm number may not be immediately needed. Applications will be accepted through December 11, 2020.

Fact Sheets

General

Dairy

Livestock

Specialty Crops

Non-Specialty Crops

USDA Rural Development Loans

The USDA Rural Business-Cooperative Service (RBCS) will begin administering the Business and Industry (B&I) Guaranteed Loan Program, which was created in the CARES Act. This program will provide $1 billion in guaranteed loans for rural businesses and agricultural producers who do not qualify for Farm Service Agency (FSA) loans.

The B&I Guaranteed Loan Program will be directed to rural businesses and agricultural producers who were in operation on Feb. 15, 2020. The loans must be used for working capital loan purposes to support business operations and facilities in rural areas including agricultural producers.

USDA also announced that these loans will:

Expand eligibility to agricultural producers who are not eligible for FSA loans;
Provide 90 percent guarantees on B&I CARES Act Program loans;
Set the application and guarantee fee at two percent of the loan;
Accept appraisals completed within two years of the loan application date;
Not require discounting of collateral for working capital loans; and
Extend the maximum term for working capital loans to 10 years.

Click here for the federal register notice

Farm Bureau Bank PPP Loans

Farm Bureau Bank has been working expeditiously with the Small Business Administration (SBA), to launch the Paycheck Protection Program; we are pleased to share that we are now accepting applications. Unlike most financial institutions we are NOT limiting applications to our existing customers and will be accepting applications from Farm Bureau Members. As I’m sure you have heard, this program is very popular, which is creating backlogs at many financial institutions and some banks are no longer accepting applications. We are here to help your Members get access to this program if they are unable to be served by their local bank.

FAQs

Checklist and Application

SCDA Information

Farmers looking to setup on-farm pickups, click here to be added to the Carolina Farm Stewardship map.

To be added to the South Carolina Department of Agriculture list of local farms, contact LauraKate McAllister by email or phone (Office: 803-734-2224 |  Cell: 803-667-7829).

Clemson Extension Information

Clemson Extension offices are closed to the public, but agents are still working and soil samples are still being processed. Click below for more information.

Extension Office Services

Soil Samples

All S.C. pesticide applicators who were licensed as of Dec. 31, 2019 but have not already renewed as of April 1, 2020, will have their licenses extended through Dec. 31, 2020 if they meet specific requirements.

Department of Pesticide Regulation

On-Farm Resources

COVID-19 is not known to be a food borne illness, but good sanitary practices remain of the utmost importance. Here are some resources to protect your farm and yourself should you open to the public.

SC Grower Covid-19 Resources

NCSU Covid-19 Resources

Guidelines for U-Pick Farms 

If you've lost your normal marketing channels, Coyote logistics might be able to help. For more information, contact Shawn McCloud, VP of UPS Operations. 

Visit their website for more information.

 

Employee Safety

Safety and Prevention Resources (English and Spanish)

Best Practices (English and Spanish)

SCDHEC COVID Fact Sheet

SCDHEC Stop the Spread of Germs

SCDHEC Quarantine vs Isolation

EPA Guidance - Respirator Protection for Pesticide Handlers

Employer Resources

For farmers with employees, here are some helpful resources

FAQs for Employers

CDC Resources

Critical Infrastructure Workers Guidance

AFBF: Impact of COVID19 on Agriculture 

Corona Virus Prevention on Farms

Families First Coronavirus Response Act

Paid Leave IRS Guidance

Dept of Labor Guidance

Temporary Travel Restrictions

H2A FAQs

Dept of Labor FAQs Round 3

Employee Retention Tax Credit

Tax Credits for Paid Leave FAQs

OSHA Guidelines for Reporting COVID

USCIS Final Rule on Fee Schedule for Visa Programs

Coronavirus Financial Aid Information

Coronavirus Farm Assistance Program

CFAP Commodity Eligibility

Coronavirus Aid Package Summary

FSA Expanded Provisions

SC DHEC Regulatory Relief

Small Business Association Size Requirements

Small Business Association Loan Eligibility

SBA Lenders Serving SC

American Farmland Trust - Farmer Relief Fund

USDA Information

NRCS and FSA offices are open by appointment only. 

FSA Office Information

NRCS Office Information

USDA’s Risk Management Agency is authorizing additional flexibilities due to coronavirus state of emergency. Working through Approved Insurance Providers, RMA is ensuring that crop insurance will be delivered.

RMA FAQs

SBA - Paycheck Protection Program

The Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) is a new guaranteed loan program, which includes $349 billion, for small businesses to keep their employees on the payroll. Eligible businesses include nonprofits, veterans organizations, Tribal business concerns, sole proprietorships, self-employed individuals, and independent contractors – with 500 or fewer employees.

Loans are capped at $10 million but can include up to eight weeks of the businesses average monthly payroll costs from the last year plus an additional 25 percent for non-payroll costs. Seasonal and new businesses will use different calculations. The PPP will be available through June 30, 2020.

The loan will be forgiven if:

All employees are kept or quickly rehired and compensation levels are maintained for eight weeks (payroll costs are capped at $100,000 on an annualized basis for each employee) The funds are used for:
  • Payroll and benefits
  • Mortgage interest incurred before February 15, 2020
  • Rent, under lease agreements in force before February 15, 2020
  • Utilities, for which service began before February 15, 2020.

Farmers can apply for the PPP through any existing SBA 7(a) lenders or through any federally insured depository institution, federally insured credit union, and Farm Credit System institution that is participating.

Applications can begin on:

April 3, 2020, for small businesses and sole proprietorships through existing SBA 7(a) lenders April 10, 2020, for independent contractors and self-employed individuals through existing SBA 7(a) lenders All federally insured depository institutions, federally insured credit unions, and Farm Credit System institutions that are not existing SBA lenders can begin making loans once they are approved and enrolled in the SBA program. New lenders will need to submit their application to DelegatedAuthority@sba.gov to apply with the SBA.

Borrowers will still owe money if:

The loan amount is used for anything other than payroll costs, mortgage interest, rent, and utilities payments over the 8 weeks after getting the loan. Due to likely high subscription, it is anticipated that not more than 25 percent of the forgiven amount may be for non-payroll costs. You will also owe money if you do not maintain your staff and payroll.

PPP Information for Agriculture Related Industries

PPP Application Form

SBA PPP Rule

PPP Borrower Information Sheet

PPP Lender Information Sheet

SBA Lenders Serving SC

Schedule F Guidance

PPP FAQs

PPP Loan Forgiveness Application

EZ Pay PPP Loan Forgiveness Application
Transportation

DOT Emergency Declaration

Expanded Declaration

DOT Waiver Information

DOT Waiver

FAQs

 

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