June 1, 2023
More than a year ago, members of the rice community began working with Sen. John Boozman, ranking member of the U.S. Senate Committee on Agriculture, and his staff for an assistance program to alleviate skyrocketing fertilizer, fuel, and input costs. Now this funding has finally come to fruition with a $250 million Rice Production Program which was included in the Consolidated Appropriations Act that passed last winter.
Kelly Robbins, executive director at Arkansas Rice, said, “We are extremely thankful for Senator Boozman and his staff who were instrumental in making this a reality. We are also appreciative of USA Rice and farmers in the rice community around the country for working together to encourage our members of congress to be supportive of this effort.”
Applying for Payment
The payment is based on all planted and prevent plant rice acres in 2022, and farmers in all six rice producing states will receive these proceeds. Producers should check their mail and expect to receive a pre-filled, FSA-174, Rice Production Program Application, if they have not received it already. For those who prefer not to wait, these forms can be printed at your local FSA office.
Farmers should ensure the pre-filled form is accurate based on their 2022 rice acreage, and there are 60 days to complete the application with a July 10, 2023, deadline for submission. Forms can be returned by mail, or Robbins said farmers are welcome to return the forms directly to their FSA office.
It should be noted this is not a first-come, first-serve basis. Robbins said that the USDA is directed by legislation that mandates all the funding to be spent. Rice producers can expect to receive up to $125,000 per operation. For larger qualifying operations, up to a $250,000 limit is available, and an FSA-510 exemption form is required.
For additional details, you can refer to the news release: USDA Announces Signup for the New Rice Production Program on its website at www.fsa.usda.gov.
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