PINE BLUFF, Ark. – Feb. 28 is the deadline for producers of spring and summer seeded planted crops to sign up for the Noninsured Assistance Program (NAP).
“NAP provides financial assistance to producers of noninsured crops when low yields or prevented planting occurs because of natural disasters,” says Dr. Henry English, director of the Small Farm Program at the University of Arkansas at Pine Bluff (UAPB). Natural disasters include drought, floods, hurricanes, blizzards, wild fires, disease and excessive rains.
Noninsured crops are primarily fruit and vegetable crops such as Southern peas, sweet potatoes and watermelons, says Dr. English who points out that some vegetable crops have a March 15 deadline. These crops include green beans, sweet corn and tomatoes (spring and fall).
“There is also NAP coverage for some field crops, but only in counties where crop insurance is not available for these crops. Corn is grown in some counties in northwest Arkansas and crop insurance is not available for the corn, but NAP is,” says Dr. English.
NAP fees are $250 per crop or a maximum of $750 for farmers with multiple crops in one county. The maximum fee for farmers with multiple crops in multiple counties is $1,875. Fees are due at signup.
Limited-resource producers may request a waiver of service fees. A limited-resource producer rancher Self-Determination Tool is available at www.lrftool.sc.egov.usda.gov/DeterminationTool.aspx?fyYear=2012. An alternative method is to Google “limited resource farmer tool 2012.”
Dr. English reminds farmers that NAP coverage does not begin until 30 days after completion of application for coverage or the date the crop is planted not to exceed the final planting date.
For more information on NAP or help in signing up, farmers can contact their local Farm Service Agency. Carroll Brown, FSA agriculture program specialist, will discuss the NAP program as part of the Rural Life Conference workshop “USDA Programs for Operating Farms and Ranches,” Feb. 24 at the Pine Bluff Convention Center. To pre-register for the conference, contact Margaret Taylor at (870) 575-7144 or [email protected].