Deadline for greens growers approaching


Growers of spring and fall greens have a Jan. 1 deadline to enroll in the Noninsured Crop Disaster Assistance Program (NAP). The $250 fee is due upon enrollment, says Henry English, director of the Small Farm Program at the University of Arkansas at Pine Bluff.

The Jan. 1 deadline is earlier than deadlines for growers of other crops. At the time of enrollment, farmers must specify if they are signing up for spring or fall or both plantings of greens. NAP provides financial assistance to producers of non-insurable crops, those for which no crop insurance is available, when low yields occur or planting is prevented due to a natural disaster.

“Limited resource producers may request a waiver of service fees, but limited resource status varies,” says English. Status can be determined by using the USDA Limited Resource Farmer and Rancher Online Self-Determination tool at http://www.lrftool.sc.egov.usda.gov/

English reminds farmers that the final planting dates differ depending upon the kinds of greens planted. For example, the final planting deadline for spring turnip and mustard greens is March 15 while the final planting date for spring collards is April 15. The fall planting dates for mustard and turnips is Oct. 1; the final planting date for fall collards is Oct. 15.

If a loss occurs, English cautions farmers to report it as soon as possible or within 15 days of the loss. Producers should not destroy the crop until a loss adjuster visits the farm and inspects the loss.

“If producers plow under a crop before an inspection by an adjuster, they will be ineligible for compensation,” says English.

Because NAP is linked to the Supplemental Revenue Assistance Program (SURE), growers of non-insurable crops, such as greens, must purchase NAP to qualify for SURE.

Socially disadvantaged, beginning and limited resource farmers, however, do not have to purchase NAP to be eligible for the SURE Program.