One year ago this week, the owner of poultry processing plants in Siler City and Mocksville, NC formerly owned by Townsend announced their plan to shut operations down by October 2011.
On July 11, 2012, Agriculture Secretary Vilsack announced that the USDA was reducing the interest rate on Emergency Loans through the USDA Farm Service Agency from 3.75% to 2.25%.
Farmers in disaster-designated counties are eligible to borrow emergency loans for up to the value of their disaster losses. While emergency loans are one of the primary modes of disaster assistance, farmers must still show eligibility and repayment ability in order to qualify.
On July 31, the Wall Street Journal online ran an article entitled “Crops Hurt, But Farmers Will Still Get Paid.” The article begins “A historic drought across the middle of the U.S. is shriveling crops—but not many farmers’ incomes.” Citing USDA statistics that 70% of crops are covered by crop insurance, this article is part of a growing voice that crop insurance means there is no financial emergency behind this historic drought. Numbers like these look good from behind a desk, but not from behind the wheel of a tractor. Here’s why.