By Brad Lubben, UNL Extension Policy Specialist, Jessica Groskopf, Nebraska Extension Educator
Nebraska USDA Farm Service Agency (FSA) is reminding producers now is the time to make elections and enroll in the Agriculture Risk Coverage (ARC) and Price Loss Coverage (PLC) programs for the 2024 crop year. The signup period is open through March 15, 2024, and producers are encouraged to begin working with their USDA county Farm Service Agency (FSA) office to complete the process. Producers can learn about the ARC and PLC options for 2024 during a series of workshops hosted by the University of Nebraska-Lincoln’s Center for Agricultural Profitability (CAP) and Nebraska FSA that will be held across the state in February.
- Gering, Feb. 6 from 9 a.m. to Noon at the Gering Civic Center (1050 M St)
- Sidney, Feb. 7 from 9 a.m. to Noon at the Cheyenne County Fairgrounds (10955 Lincoln Hwy)
- Alliance, Feb. 8 from 9 a.m. to Noon at the Knight Museum (908 Yellowstone Ave)
- Valentine. Feb. 9 from 9 a.m. to Noon at Mid Plains Community College (715 US-20)
ARC and PLC are key USDA safety-net programs that help producers weather fluctuations in either revenue or price for certain crops.
“Safety-net programs like ARC and PLC are designed to help producers mitigate some of the financial stressors associated with crop production. I encourage farmers to evaluate their program elections and enroll for the 2024 crop year,” said Nebraska FSA Acting State Executive Director Tim Divis.
Brad Lubben, Nebraska Extension policy specialist, said changes in commodity crop prices over the past several years may influence producers’ ARC/PLC decision-making process for 2024. “With the one-year extension of the 2018 Farm Bill, producers face a familiar choice between ARC and PLC for 2024, but under different circumstances now as compared to the past several years,” said Lubben. “Understanding the program mechanics and analysis will help producers make sound enrollment decisions with FSA.”
ARC provides income support payments on historical base acres when actual crop revenue declines below a specified guaranteed level. PLC provides income support payments on historical base acres when the effective price for a covered commodity falls below its effective reference price. Producers can elect coverage and enroll in ARC-County or PLC on a crop-by-crop basis, or ARC-Individual for the entire farm, for the 2024 crop year. Although election changes for 2024 are optional, enrollment (signed contract) is required for each year of the program. If a producer has a multi-year contract on the farm, it will be necessary to sign a new contract for the farm by the March 15th deadline if a 2024 election change is desired.
If an election is not submitted by the deadline of March 15, 2024, the election defaults to the current election for crops on the farm from the prior crop year. Divis said all program participants are encouraged to review their previous program elections.
The meetings are free and open to the public. More information and a full schedule are available on the Center for Agricultural Profitability’s website, https://cap.unl.edu/farmbill.