USDA preparing to support distressed farmers

Farmers facing financial hardships may have to wait until October before they find out if they will qualify for debt relief.

Ag Secretary Tom Vilsack says a moratorium is currently in place suspending debt collections, foreclosures, and other legal actions against FSA borrowers who are delinquent in their payments.

“We are certainly focused on making sure that we have in place ideas and thoughts about how to best proceed to help and assist those distressed farmers,” he says.

The moratorium could be lifted as early as October.

He says the agency is currently evaluating its more than 100,000 direct loans.

“There is 22 percent of folks who have either been or are currently delinquent or have had struggles,” he shares.

The USDA has not shared details on how it will use the $3.1 billion in funds provided by the Inflation Reduction Act to help distressed loan borrowers.  Vilsack says those details will likely come before the end of the year.

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