The Agriculture Department sharply increased commodity payment rates for its 2019 trade assistance package, boosting the corn rate by 14-fold and quadrupling cotton’s, based on higher estimates of the trade damage that farmers have suffered.
When the Department of Agriculture changed the way it distributed Market Facilitation Program payments for the 2019 edition of the program, it also changed where a good chunk of the payments were going.
Farmers who qualify for the upcoming round of trade assistance payments will get at least $15 an acre, says Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue, who will release additional details of the Market Facilitation Program later in the week.
Economists and farm groups say the Trump Administration's $16-billion "trade aid" package is designed for Midwestern farmers and the amount that trickles over to California farmers will provide little relief.
Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue on Thursday left open the possibility that farmers who file prevented planting insurance claims may still be eligible for payments under the new trade assistance package.