Market Facilitation Program (MFP)
The USDA announced on July 27th that they plan to authorize up to $12 billion in programs to help farmers due to the disrupted commodity markets – primarily due to the trade war with China. The part of the program that will primarily impact our area producers is the Market Facilitation Program (MFP), which will consist of direct payments to producers. Sign-ups for payments at FSA will begin on September 4, 2018 and farmers are expected to receive around $4.7 billion in initial farm aid. The majority of that will be going to soybean producers who will receive payments based on a rate of $1.65 per bushel x 50% percent of 2018 actual production. Other commodities eligible to receive payments include wheat (14 cents per bushel), corn (1 cent per bushel), pork ($8/head) and dairy (12 cents per hundredweight). Payments are capped per person or legal entity at $125,000 for eligible crop commodities and a combined $125,000 for dairy production and hogs. MFP Payments do not count against other Farm Bill payment limitations. Similar to other Farm Bill payment requirements a producer must be in conservation compliance and their adjusted gross income may not exceed $900,000. There is the possibility of an additional commodity payment on the remaining 50% of actual production with a December 2018 start date. Payments are only for the 2018 crop year and not anticipated to continue moving forward.

UPDATE 4/29/2019
USDA extended the deadline to May 17 from May 1 for agricultural producers to certify 2018 crop production for payments through the Market Facilitation Program (MFP). 

UPDATE 1/24/2018
Starting today all FSA offices will remain open Monday through Friday for the next two weeks. If the shutdown continues past Feb. 8, those offices will only stay open on Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays to provide “additional administrative services.”  The deadline to sign up for MFP program is now February 14th , 2019.  If you have not signed up for the MFP program yet, we highly recommend you do so right away.

UPDATE 1/8/2018
U.S Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue has announced they will extend the deadline for agricultural producers to apply for payments under the Market Facilitation Program. The original deadline had been January 15, 2019, but due to the government shutdown there is a need to extend this deadline. Per Sonny Perdue, “We will extend the application deadline for a period of time equal to the number of business days FSA offices were closed, once the government shutdown ends.

UPDATE 12/21/2018
The USDA announced that a second payment will be released for the MFP program.  The second payment rate is the same as the first and will be issued on the remaining 50% of production.

For producers who already provided production totals to FSA, the second payment will be processed immediately.  If you signed up for direct deposit, you should see funds deposited the week of Christmas and the income will be credited for the 2018 calendar year on your 1099.

Please remember that the payment limitation is $125,000 per person so if your second payment is less than the first it likely means you hit the payment limit.

UPDATE 11/6/2018
Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue confirmed last week that the second round of Market Facilitation Program payments will happen before the end of this year. At this point, the payment rates have not changed. “We’re looking at market conditions,” said Perdue. “Frankly, right now, we see no change in the amount.” Farm groups have sought increases in the MFP payment rates, but a USDA spokesperson said no decision has been made on that. Perdue also confirmed there are no plans to extend the Market Facilitation Program for the 2019 crop year.

UPDATE 10/5/2018
As with Multi-Peril Crop Insurance, keeping good production evidence for the MFP program is important in the event you are faced with an audit. At ProAg, we are here to help you complete your Production Report and assist you with organizing your records. Having these records completed prior to certifying production for the MFP program will not only simplify the process for you, it will assure consistency with what you are reporting to RMA and FSA.

The following are some MFP updates from the USDA’s September 21, 2018 notice:

  • There will be two places on the CCC-910 form that needs to be signed. Part D “Producer Certification” needs to be signed by January 15, 2019, and Part C “Production Information” needs to be completed and signed by May 1, 2019.
  • You will only have one opportunity per commodity to certify production on the FSA form CCC-910. If it is found on a later date that you under reported bushels to FSA they will not accept a revision of form CCC-910.
  • FSA will be spot checking producers production evidence in the future. The frequency of these spot checks are currently unknown, however, if you are pulled for a spot check you will be required to provide the documents you used for the MFP certification.
  • Payments are not subject to sequestration by creditors.
  • If determined necessary, the second payment rate will be announced on or around December 3, 2018 and applies to the remaining 50 percent of actual production or number of animals.

If you would like additional information please call ProAg at 218-935-2700 or click here to be directed to the USDA MFP website.