FSA administrator emphasizes flexibility for USDA programs

Farm Service Agency Administrator Zach Ducheneaux says USDA is working to be flexible within existing programs to help more farmers and ranchers. 

Ducheneaux used the new forage hauling provision within the ELAP program as an example.  “We got feedback from the countryside that maybe we missed the boat a little bit. We had producers out there that found more economy in moving the livestock to the forage, so we went back to work and we said we were wrong, and we’re going to fix that.”

The Administrator says USDA is also looking at changes in the Emergency Conservation Program based on farmer feedback. “When you’re faced with an emergency, the last thing you need is assistance a year and a half later, so we’re working on changes to the ECP program to make that more timely. We’ve made it a more structured payment program.”

Ducheneaux told the Midwest Ag Summit in Fargo, North Dakota Tuesday the livestock programs are not as mature as USDA’s crop programs are since they’ve only been part of the last two or three farm bills, so there’s room to tweak them.

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