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Disaster Loans Available for Flooded Farmers

Farmers have tough choices to make on whether or not to replant.

Farmers in disaster counties can apply now for USDA disaster loans at a rate of 3.3%. To qualify, producers must be a family farmer, be in a disaster county, be denied credit elsewhere and have a major loss of at least 30% of a normal year's production.

"It could be a physical loss, which would include the loss of livestock, livestock feed or livestock products," says Jim Radintz of the Farm Service Agency. "We know in some places roads and bridges were washed out and there were some dairy farmers who had to dump their milk for several days because the milk trucks couldn't get through."

Radintz recommends that producers who think they may need the loan and qualify visit their local FSA office and apply. He also says that farmers who decide to replant crops may not qualify for the loan unless the new replanted crop shows a 30% loss later.

"It's going to be a difficult situation and we would hope that folks would really figure that really carefully before making those replant decisions," Radintz says. "In a lot of places in the flooded areas the replanting window is starting to close because of the time of year. There's a lot of different factors to consider when making those decisions and it's going to be difficult for some folks, no question about it."

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