Has your agricultural operation been impacted by a winter storm? USDA is here to help you prepare for and recover from blizzards, freeze, frost and other cold weather events.
Recovery on Your Operation
USDA offers a suite of disaster assistance programs that can help with recovery, including:
Emergency Assistance for Livestock, Honeybees, and Farm-Raised Fish Program
The Emergency Assistance for Livestock, Honeybees, and Farm-Raised Fish Program (ELAP) provides emergency assistance to eligible producers of livestock, honeybees and farm-raised fish. It covers losses due to an eligible adverse weather or loss conditions.
Livestock Indemnity Program
The Livestock Indemnity Program (LIP) provides benefits to livestock owners and contract growers who experience livestock deaths in excess of normal mortality caused by specific adverse weather, disease, or animal attacks.
Noninsured Crop Disaster Assistance Program
The Noninsured Crop Disaster Assistance Program (NAP) provides financial assistance to producers of non-insurable crops to protect against natural disasters that result in lower yields or crop losses or prevents crop planting. Producers must have obtained NAP coverage for the crop year in which the loss occurs.
Tree Assistance Program
The Tree Assistance Program (TAP) provides cost-share assistance to replant or rehabilitate trees, bushes or vines lost during the natural disaster. TAP complements NAP or federal crop insurance coverage, which covers the crop but not the plants or trees in all cases. This program provides assistance for trees, bushes or vines not covered by the Noninsured Crop Disaster Assistance Program or crop insurance.
Environmental Quality Incentives Program
The Environmental Quality Incentives Program (EQIP) provides financial and technical assistance to help with immediate needs and long-term support to help recover from natural disasters and conserve water resources. Assistance may also be available for emergency animal mortality disposal from natural disasters and other causes.
USDA offers a variety of direct and guaranteed loans, including operating and emergency loans, to eligible producers unable to secure commercial financing. Loans can help producers replace essential property, purchase inputs like livestock, equipment, feed and seed, cover family living expenses or refinance farm-related debts and other needs.
Additionally, several loan servicing options are available for borrowers who are unable to make scheduled payments on their farm loan program debt because of reasons beyond their control.
Protect Your Operation
If you do not have crop insurance or Noninsured Crop Disaster Assistance Program coverage, consider these risk management options to help protect your operation.
- For crop insurance, use the Agent Locator to find a crop insurance agent near you. USDA’s Risk Management Agency works closely with Approved Insurance Providers, who sell and service the policies that producers purchase, to ensure efficient loss adjustment and prompt claims payments.
- For Noninsured Crop Disaster Assistance Program (NAP) coverage, contact your USDA Service Center to obtain coverage.
Reporting Losses/Submitting Applications
If your operation was impacted by a natural disaster and you have an interest in participating in an available disaster assistance program, you should report losses and damages to FSA and/or your Approved Insurance Provider for crop insurance claims.
Timelines to file notices of loss and submit applications differ by program or coverage:
- Emergency Assistance for Livestock, Honeybees, and Farm-Raised Fish Program: File with your Service Center within 30 days for livestock and fish and within 15 days for honeybees.
- Tree Assistance Program: File a program application with your Service Center within 90 days.
- Non-insured Crop Disaster Assistance Program: File notice of loss with your Service Center within 15 days, except for hand-harvested crops, which should be filed within 72 hours.
- Crop Insurance: Contact your agent within 72 hours of discovering damage and follow up in writing within 15 days.
It’s critical to keep accurate records to document all losses following devastating cold weather events. Livestock producers are advised to document beginning livestock numbers by taking time and date-stamped video or pictures prior to the loss.
Other common documentation options agricultural producers might want to have on hand include:
- Purchase records
- Production records
- Vaccination records
- Bank or other loan documents
- Third-party certification
Visit our Translations page to find translated disaster resources and other USDA resources in languages other than English.
- March 21, 2023: USDA Offers Disaster Assistance to Agricultural Producers Impacted by Recent Winter Storms in Idaho, Minnesota, North Dakota, South Dakota and Wyoming
- May 19, 2021: USDA Designates 13 Texas Counties as Primary Natural Disaster Areas
- May 13, 2021: USDA Expands Aquaculture Disaster Assistance to Include Fish Raised for Food
- February 18, 2021: USDA Offers Disaster Assistance for Producers Facing Inclement Weather
- February 17, 2021: USDA Ready to Assist Farmers, Ranchers and Communities Affected by Winter Storms
Find Your Local Service Center
USDA Service Centers are locations where you can connect with Farm Service Agency, Natural Resources Conservation Service, or Rural Development employees for your business needs. Enter your state and county below to ﬁnd your local service center and agency offices. If this locator does not work in your browser, please visit offices.usda.gov.