USDA’s Coronavirus Food Assistance Program Extends Deadline, Adds Nursery and Cut Flower Crops
On Aug. 11, USDA announced that additional crops including nursery crops and cut flowers and other commodities are covered by the Coronavirus Food Assistance Program in response to public comments and data.
Additionally, USDA is extending the deadline to apply for the program to Sept. 11, and producers with approved applications will receive their final payment.
According to USDA, nursery crops and cut flowers are defined as:
- Nursery crops means decorative or non-decorative plants grown in a container or controlled environment for commercial sale.
- Cut flowers includes cut flowers and cut greenery from annual and perennial flowering plants grown in a container or controlled environment for commercial sale.
According to a news release, after reviewing over 1,700 responses, even more growers, farmers and ranchers will have the opportunity for assistance to help keep operations afloat during these tough times.
AmericanHort released a statement after USDA announced expanded eligibility for the Coronavirus Food Assistance Program (CFAP):
“AmericanHort extends our sincere appreciation to the USDA for working with us to provide meaningful nursery and floriculture grower relief,” said Craig Regelbrugge, vice president of Advocacy and Government Relations. “For countless horticultural producers, the effects of the coronavirus’ sudden closure of markets during our peak selling season risked destroying businesses across the supply chain. We are happy to report Secretary Sonny Perdue and Under Secretary Bill Northey responded with understanding to help the industry successfully navigate the pandemic by expanding eligibility to this program.”
The program, funded through the CARES Act and the Commodity Credit Corporation, provides direct assistance payments to eligible commodities for which significant losses occurred due to pandemic-related market disruption. Nursery and floriculture crops are now eligible for relief. USDA also extended the application deadline to Sept. 11, 2020.