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Agriculture is a risky business. USDA is here to help you prepare, recover, and build long-term resilience to natural disasters.
When disaster strikes, USDA Disaster Resource Center can help you find information about specific disasters and emergencies and connect with state and local help. You can even view, print, and download a quick reference guide to USDA Disaster Resources for Farmers, Ranchers, and Communities.
Disaster Assistance Programs
Crops and Plants
Consider options to prepare for and recover from losses of crops, trees, bushes, and vines
The new 2017 Wildfires and Hurricanes Indemnity Program provides disaster payments to producers to offset losses from hurricanes and wildfires during 2017 – particularly losses of crops, trees, bushes, and vines.
The Tree Assistance Program helps orchardists and nursery tree growers replant or rehabilitate eligible trees, bushes, and vines damaged by natural disasters and eligible plant disease.
The Noninsured Crop Disaster Assistance Program helps producers to manage risk through coverage for both crop losses and crop planting that was prevented due to natural disasters. The eligible or “noninsured” crops include agricultural commodities not covered by federal crop insurance.
Producers must be enrolled in the program and have purchased coverage for the eligible crop in the crop year in which the loss incurred to receive program benefits following a qualifying natural disaster.
Animals and Livestock
Find financial assistance for livestock, honeybees, and farm-raised fish losses due to qualifying natural disasters and events
The Emergency Assistance for Livestock, Honeybees, and Farm-raised Fish Program provides financial assistance to eligible producers for livestock, honeybee, and farm-raised fish losses – such as death, feed, grazing, and associated transportation costs – due to disease and certain adverse weather events or loss conditions. The program addresses losses not covered by other USDA disaster assistance programs.
The Livestock Forage Disaster Program provides compensation to eligible livestock producers who have suffered grazing losses on land that is native or improved pastureland with permanent vegetative cover or is planted specifically for grazing. The grazing losses must be due to a qualifying drought condition or fire on federally-managed land during the normal grazing period for a county.
The Livestock Indemnity Program 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.
Find assistance to repair damages caused by natural disasters such as severe erosion, debris-clogged waterways, downed timber, damaged or destroyed farm structures, repeat flooding, or emergency measures to cope with severe drought
The Conservation Reserve Program enables producers to enter into 10-15 year contracts for agreeing to remove environmentally sensitive land from agricultural production and to plant species that will improve environmental health and quality. While not established specifically for disaster response, emergency haying and grazing may be allowed by USDA Farm Service Agency to provide relief to livestock producers in areas affected by a severe drought or similar natural disaster.
The Emergency Conservation Program provides funding for farmers and ranchers to rehabilitate farmland damaged by natural disasters and to carry out emergency water conservation measures during periods of severe drought.
The Emergency Forest Restoration Program offers financial payments to eligible private forest landowners who restore forests damaged by natural disasters or insect and disease infestations.
The Environmental Quality Incentives Program provides agricultural producers with financial resources and one-on-one help to plan and implement improvements on the land. While not established specifically for disaster response, the program can assist with immediate recovery needs and provide long-term support to help conserve water resources, reduce wind erosion on drought-impacted fields, improve livestock access to water, recover from natural disasters like wildfires, and more.
The Emergency Watershed Protection Program – with recovery and floodplain easement options – provides personalized advice and financial assistance to relieve imminent threats to life and property caused by floods, fires, windstorms, and other natural disasters that impair a watershed.
The Agricultural Conservation Easement Program – Wetland Reserve Easement provides management flexibility to producers affected by drought by offering haying or grazing of easement areas where the activity is consistent with conservation of wildlife habitat and wetlands. The Wetland Reserve Easement is a voluntary program that purchases easements from landowners in exchange for their commitment to maintain areas as wetlands.
Find additional USDA disaster assistance options for farmers, ranchers, foresters, and other producers who are currently enrolled in USDA Farm Service Agency and Natural Resources Conservation Service programs
The Emergency Loan Program provides loans to help producers recover from production and physical losses due to drought, flooding, other natural disasters, or quarantine.
The Disaster Set-Aside Program applies specifically to producers who have existing direct loans with the USDA Farm Service Agency and need to “set-aside” scheduled payments temporarily due to designated natural disasters.
Prepare for your visit to the service center
Producers who have not participated in a USDA program should contact their local USDA service center to establish farm records. To establish a farm tract number, be sure to bring the following items:Proof of identity such as driver’s license or Social Security number/card
Copy of recorded deed, survey plat, rental, or lease agreement of the land (You do not have to own property to participate in USDA programs.)
Articles of incorporation, estate, or trust documents for entities
During your visit, you may need to complete or update the following forms for your farm records:
- CCC-941 – Reports your average adjusted gross income for programs where income restrictions apply
(Note: This form does not apply to the 2017 Wildfires and Hurricanes Indemnity Program.)
- AD-1026 – Ensures a conservation plan is in place before lands with highly erodible soils are farmed, identified wetland areas are protected, and conservation compliance provisions are met
- CCC-901 – Identifies members of a farm or ranch that is a legal entity