Attention Bell, Clay, Harlan, Knox, and Whitley County producers — Farm Service Agency (FSA) will provide a new financing option to help you purchase portable storage and handling equipment.
County Executive Director Megan Moore explains, “The loans, which now include a smaller microloan option with lower down payments and attractive interest rates, are designed to help our producers grow their businesses and markets. This Farm Storage Facility Loan program is especially beneficial to our new, small, and mid-sized producers.”
“The new microloan option allows applicants needing less than $50,000 to qualify for a reduced down payment of five percent and no requirement of the typical three years of production history,” says Moore. Farms of all sizes are eligible and encouraged to participate. Specifically, specialty crop producers and small/mid-scale producers who may not have access to commercial storage or on-farm storage post-harvest can greatly benefit.
“These producers can invest in equipment like conveyers, scales, refrigeration units, hay storage structures, trucks, and much more that can help with storage, transportation, and a number of other needs concerning post-harvest commodities,” she added.
Earlier this year, FSA significantly expanded the list of commodities eligible for Farm Storage Facility Loan. “Eligible commodities now include aquaculture; floriculture; fruits (including nuts) and vegetables, corn, grain sorghum, rice, oilseeds, oats, wheat, triticale, spelt, buckwheat, lentils, chickpeas, dry peas sugar, peanuts, barley, rye, hay, honey, hops, maple sap, unprocessed meat, eggs, milk, cheese, butter, yogurt, and renewable biomass,” said Moore.
Moore lastly wanted to remind all local producers that with the fortunate grace-period where reports can be late-filed without a penalty, it is not too late to file perennial forage (hay and pasture) crop reports.
Moore said, “This is important in order that our producers be eligible to participate in programs like the Livestock Forage Disaster Program which deals with drought and a number of other livestock assistance, conservation, and crop assistance programs.”
To learn more about Farm Storage Facility Loans and other opportunities your local Farm Service Agency has to offer you with a number of different agricultural programs (livestock, conservation, crops, loan assistance) and much more, please contact your local Barbourville USDA FSA Service Center: 606-546-3373 or [email protected]