USDA makes it easier for American farmers to grow food and ease the burden on American families
Expands Double Crop Insurance Coverage for 2023 to Support Food Production and Reduce Costs for American Families
WASHINGTON, July 12, 2022 – Today, the Biden administration announced additional steps it is taking to support American farmers in their work to stabilize food prices and feed Americans and the world amid persistent challenges such as the pandemic of COVID-19, supply chain disruptions and Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. . The US Department of Agriculture is reducing the economic risk of growing two crops on the same land in one year, making it easier for US farmers to grow food in America, increasing food supply and reduce food costs for American families. This action is part of a larger framework set of commitments made earlier this year by President Biden and Secretary Vilsack to increase domestic food production amid potential global food shortages related to the invasion of Ukraine.
To reduce the risk of growing two crops on the same land in one year – a practice known as double cropping – the USDA’s Risk Management Agency (RMA) is expanding the possibilities for double crop insurance in more of 1,500 counties where double cropping is viable.
“In May, I joined President Biden at the O’Connor Farm in Kankakee, Illinois, to announce a series of actions to help farmers do what they do: grow food for American families and the rest of the world. Today, the USDA is delivering on one of those commitments and making it easier to plant dual crops and share some of the financial risk by making crop insurance more available in more than 1,500 counties,” said Secretary Vilsack. “These are difficult times, but I trust the American farmer and American agriculture to help keep the food we need affordable and available. The Biden administration and the USDA will continue to find ways to ease the burden on American farmers and reduce costs for American families, such as expanding double-cropping options through crop insurance.
- For soybeans, double-cropping coverage will be expanded or streamlined in at least 681 counties, including all those originally targeted for review. While some additional counties have been added permanently to become dual-crop counties, the majority of the expansion has removed barriers such as the requirement for production records and streamlined the process for getting custom coverage through a written agreement.
- For grain sorghum, double cropping coverage will be expanded or streamlined in at least 870 counties initially targeted for review. As with soy, most of these changes included streamlining the administrative burden and requirements for obtaining written agreements. Written agreements provide the producer with maximum flexibility by allowing them to obtain crop insurance coverage, but not requiring spring and winter crop coverage as in permanent dual-crop counties.
- RMA will also work with the crop insurance industry and agricultural organizations to highlight the availability and improvements of written agreements as an option for any farmer growing a crop outside of the area where a policy is automatically proposed.
This expansion of coverage was guided by extensive outreach to nearly 70 producer groups spanning 28 states. This includes a wide range of stakeholders such as growers, agents, academic and other agricultural extension experts, commodity associations, state departments of agriculture, and insurance companies. The USDA could add additional counties as it explores those options with farmers this summer, with final rules locked in by the fall. Since farmers need to plan ahead for adding a winter crop to a rotation, the USDA wanted to make sure they had time to consider this option and consult with local experts in extension and agriculture and their crop insurance agent.
Additional resources released today by the USDA include Frequently Asked Questions as good as Helping Farmers Fight Global Food Insecurity webpage on farmer.gov.
Crop insurance is sold and issued only through private crop insurance agents. A list of crop insurance agents is available at all USDA service centers and online at RMA Agent Locator. Producers can learn more about crop insurance and the modern agricultural safety net at rma.usda.gov.
The USDA touches the lives of all Americans every day in so many positive ways. Under the Biden-Harris administration, the USDA is transforming the US food system and lowering food prices for Americans by focusing on more resilient local and regional food production, encouraging fairer markets for all producers and ensuring access to safe, healthy and nutritious food in all communities. . The USDA has also prioritized creating new markets and revenue streams for farmers and producers using climate-smart food and forestry practices, made historic investments in infrastructure and clean energy in rural America, and is committed to equity across the department by removing systemic barriers and building a more representative America’s workforce. To learn more, visit usda.gov.
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