USDA Providing Bailout Money For Farmers Hit Hard By Tariffs

Last year, it was the drought.This year, it’s tariffs that are leaving North Dakota farmers worried. As Malique Rankin reports, through the USDA’s market facilitation program, our producers can soon apply for some relief.

Corn, soybean, and wheat producers have seen the biggest price drops in North Dakota. The USDA is spending over 1 billion dollars to buy surplus food to help hurting farmers.

Clark Price; Farmer: “On the corn, we’re probably 20-30 cents below a year ago.”

The USDA is offering corn farmers 1 cent per bushel to make up for the money lost because of the tariffs put in place by the Trump administration. KX News Reporter Malique Rankin spoke with the National Corn Growers Association, who said that number should be closer to 44 cents a bushel. Losing 44 cents a corn bushel adds up, and that’s just looking at 2018.

Dale Ihry; ND Corn Growers Association and Council Executive Director: “That would be a 200 million dollar loss for ND corn farmers by itself.”

The ND Corn Growers Association was hoping the USDA would offer a more practical amount.

Dale Ihry; ND Corn Growers Association and Council Executive Director: “We were hoping for a dime a bushel or something a little above that. 1 penny a bushel does not cover the loss of market due to the trade war that’s currently going on.”

Production has been generous this year.

Clark Price; Farmer: “Oh it’s very important, trade is a big deal for any farmer. One thing about US farmers, we do know how to produce. We’re probably going into a record large corn crop this year nationwide.”

But with prices so low, it’s costing farmers even more.

Clark Price; Farmer: “On the average farm, I’m going to say it’s cost the average farm 40-50 thousand. At least that much.”

The US Department of Ag says farmers can begin requesting the aid September 4th. For Price, he’ll be requesting the USDA’s assistance shortly after it’s available. The local Farm Service Agency, said they’ll be training this Friday on how to help farmers looking to apply for bailout money from the USDA.

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