Carol Sanders | School of Agriculture, Fisheries and Human Sciences
Jan. 3, 2017, is the deadline for growers of spring and fall greens to enroll in the Noninsured Crop Disaster Assistance Program (NAP). This is earlier than deadlines for growers of other crops.
Although Jan. 1 is the official closing date, whenever the final date falls on a Saturday, Sunday, holiday or a day when the office is closed, the deadline is extended to the close of business of the next working day. The FSA office will be closed on Jan. 2, so farmers have until the close of Jan. 3 to enroll in NAP.
At the time of enrollment, farmers must specify if they are signing up for spring or fall or both plantings of greens. NAP provides financial assistance to growers of crops for which no crop insurance is available when low yields occur or planting is prevented due to a natural disaster.
The Agricultural Act of 2014 brought several changes to NAP, said Dr. English, head of the Small Farm Program at the University of Arkansas at Pine Bluff. One is a Buy-Up coverage option. NAP coverage is now available at 50, 55, 60 and 65 percent of the farmers’ approved yield and 100 percent of the average market price instead of only the basic coverage of 50 percent of the yield and 55 percent of the average market price, said Dr. English.
Certain growers should be interested in the NAP fee waivers and premium reductions, said Dr. English. Basic NAP coverage is now free to all farmers who qualify as beginning, limited resource or socially disadvantaged.
Women are included as socially disadvantaged producers for this program. Previously only limited resource farmers were eligible, said Dr. English.
Farmers in these categories are also eligible for a 50 percent reduction in NAP Buy-Up coverage premiums. To be eligible for a fee waiver or premium reduction, farmers must certify their status when they apply for coverage at their Farm Service Agency office, said Dr. English.
If a loss occurs, Dr. English cautions growers to report it within 72 hours if harvest is complete or when damage is apparent and to file a written notice within 15 calendar days. Producers should not destroy the crop until a loss adjuster inspects the loss. If they do, they will be ineligible for compensation, warns Dr. English.
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