The deadline for dairy producers to enroll in the Margin Protection Program for Dairy for 2016 coverage has been extended through November 20, 2015. The 2014 Farm Bill established the Margin Protection Program for Dairy, a voluntary risk management program for dairy producers. The program, authorized through December 31, 2018, offers financial assistance to participating dairy farmers when the margin falls below the coverage level chosen by the producer.
U.S. Secretary of Agriculture, Tom Vilsack, discussed that the decision to implement the deadline extension helps accommodate dairy producers during the busy harvest season and allows them enough time to consider their options while making a coverage decision for 2016. Although methods are available to assist with projecting and forecasting, market fluctuation should encourage dairy producers to consider the protections offered by the program.
To register, eligible dairy producers must contact their local Farm Service Agency (FSA) office to submit a Production History Establishment (form CCC–781), Contract and Annual Coverage Election (form CCC–782), payment for the $100 administrative fee for each year covered, and pay the associated premium, if applicable.
Producers enrolled in 2015 are reminded to make a coverage election for 2016 and pay the $100 administrative fee. To remain eligible for higher coverage levels in 2016, any unpaid premium fees must be paid entirely by the enrollment deadline. However, premiums for 2016 are not due until September 1, 2016. In addition, dairy producers have the option to work with milk marketing companies to cover premiums on their behalf.
Under the 2014 Farm Bill, any program payments are subject to reduced payments up to a certain percentage in correspondence to the year of coverage for sequestering. If sequestering is necessary, FSA will reduce the program payments by the required amount for that year.
Producers may visit http://www.fsa.usda.gov/mpptool to receive assistance in calculating the coverage options most suitable for their operation. They may also contact their local FSA county office to ensure enrollment in the Margin Protection Program for Dairy. Local offices can be found at http://offices.usda.gov.
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