The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Farm Storage Facility Loan Program (FSFL) provides low-interest loans for producers to build or upgrade permanent farm storage and handling facilities to store commodities they grow on their farm. “Loans can be used for items such as cold storage equipment for fruits and vegetables, hay barns, grain storage and handling structures, safety and drying equipment and equipment necessary for the function of the structure,” said Lisa Allen, price support specialist for the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Missouri Farm Service Agency State Office. “Eligible commodities include grains, oilseeds, peanuts, pulse crops, hay, honey, renewable biomass commodities, fruits, nuts and vegetables.”
The Farm Service Agency (FSA) is authorized to implement the program through USDA’s Commodity Credit Corporation (CCC).
“This program can help producers expand their operations by acquiring needed structures to increase their on-farm storage capacity,” said Shelly Bilderback, public relations outreach specialist for the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Oklahoma Farm Service Agency. “Whether the need is for a grain bin, a hay barn or cold storage for fruits and vegetables, the FSFL can be beneficial to a variety of operations.”
In order to qualify for this program, borrowers must produce an eligible facility loan commodity and demonstrate a storage need based on their 3-year-average acreage and share of production, minus any current storage available. Borrowers must have a satisfactory credit rating as determined by CCC; possess no delinquent non-tax federal debt; and must demonstrate the ability to repay the debt for the facility loan.
Additionally, there are security requirements and other items based on loan amounts that producers can discuss with their local FSA agent, Bilderback said. The borrower(s) must comply with USDA provisions for highly erodible land and wetlands; the National Environmental Policy Act; and any applicable local zoning, land use and building codes.
“All farm storage facility loans must be approved by the local FSA county committee before any site preparation and/or construction can be started,” Bilderback said.
The maximum loan amount through the Farm Storage Facility Loan Program is $500,000. A loan will not be disbursed until the facility has been erected and inspected with the exception of one qualifying partial disbursement, Bilderback added.
The net cost for building or upgrading farm storage and handling facilities and equipment may include the purchase price and sales tax; shipping and delivery charges; site preparation and appraisal costs; installation costs; new material and labor for concrete pads; electrical wiring, and electric motors; off-farm paid labor; new on-farm material approved by FSA; and, attorney or archaeological study fees.
According to Bilderback, loan terms are available in 7, 10 or 12 year increments, depending on the amount of the loan. Current rates for a Farm Storage Facility Loans are as low as 2.125 percent at 7-Year terms; 2.750 percent for 10 years; or 2.875 percent for 12 years. Loans are repaid in equal amortized installments.
“This loan program provides farmers with a great opportunity to finance additional storage or upgrade to existing storage,” Allen said. “Having the additional on-farm storage helps the farmer to sell his/her crop at a time when the market is favorable for them, rather than being forced to sell immediately after harvest or pay for commercial storage. They can also use the storage to store livestock feed grown on their farm rather than buying feed.”


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