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Deadlines near for growers to apply for federal crop loss protection

April 04, 2002|STAFF REPORT

SACRAMENTO — Deadlines are nearing for California growers of uninsured crops to apply for affordable federal crop loss protection.

"Changes in federal regulation allow for individual coverage tailored to meet specific producer's needs" says California Agriculture Secretary William (Bill) J. Lyons Jr., "Until now, such application were only considered when there were catastrophic losses occurring in a widespread area."

Each individual loss is now measured on its own merits.

To be eligible under this program all 2001 and 2002 crop year sales must have a sales closing date of April 18 unless there are multiple plantings of the same crop in the county. Applications and service fees must be submitted to the USDA Farm Service Agency office by April 18.

Growers who did not previously apply for the noninsured assistance program and who have already reported losses may still be able to obtain benefits by meeting that filing deadline. Crops eligible are those for which crop insurance is not available, including fruits and vegetables, aquaculture and forage crops.

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Lyons urges growers to maintain clear and concise records and submit timely reports of crop acreages, yields, production and losses. Crop production records from 2000 and 2001 crop years can be certified to substantiate crop loss claims. Sales closing dates for 2003 production will vary by crop.

For information and applications contact your local USDA Farm Service Agency office.

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