The application deadline for the Livestock Forage Program (LFP) is coming at the end of this week. Today I revisit a post from the fall on how LFP works. I’ve also included updated versions of USDA’s county maps for eligible payment months by forage crop.
Dates and Deadlines
1/4/2021 – 2/12/2021 – CRP Enrollment
1/26/2021 – Dalhart Northwest Panhandle Crops Meeting
1/27/2021 – Dumas Beef & Range Meeting
1/28/2020 – Spearman High Plains Cotton Conference
1/27/2021 – 3/3/2021 Each Wednesday – Master Marketer Amarillo Online Program
1/29/2021 – Cattle Report
1/31/2021 – Sheep and Goats Report
1/30/2021 – LFP Signup
2/18/2021 – 2/19/2021 – USDA’s 97th Agricultural Outlook Forum
What I’m Reading
Digital agriculture connects dots for crop improvement – AgriLife Today
In October I posted information on the LFP program. I thought the program was worth revisiting since so many forage crops are eligible for payments across so much of the state this year. LFP is a program administered through FSA that provides payments to livestock producers who are also producers of grazed forage crops that have suffered a loss of grazed forage due to qualifying drought conditions. There are other aspects to the program that apply to grazers of federal land or in the event of fire. Today we will discuss the basic provisions.
A livestock owner or contract grower who also produces forage crops that are owned or leased are eligible for payments from LFP. Payments are based on the duration a given county was designated in different drought statuses. The table below provides the number of monthly payments based on durations spent in each drought category. Additionally, the final section of this post includes maps updated December 31, 2020 with the number of payment months by crop by county. Most counties on the Texas High Plains qualify for payments under at least one crop.
Monthly Payments by Time Period County Designated in Given Drought Status
Eligible livestock run the gamut of normal species. Beef and dairy cattle, sheep, and goats are all eligible for payments, as are a long list of unique species. These include beefalo, buffalo, deer, equine, elk, reindeer, alpacas, emus and llamas.
More important than the species is the grazing status of these livestock. Eligible animals include those that are or WOULD HAVE BEEN grazing the eligible land during the normal grazing period for a specific type of forage. This is a key provision if you are concerned about access to payments due to drought-induced culling. Eligible livestock must have been owned, leased, purchased, or contracted during the 60 days prior to the beginning date of the qualifying drought. Eligible livestock include those sold or otherwise disposed of due to qualifying drought conditions. Any eligible livestock must be owned for commercial operations and not for recreation or hunting.
Program enrollment for eligible producers is conducted through FSA. Application for payments and required supporting documents proving inventory are due to the FSA office within 30 calendar days after the end of the of the calendar year in which the grazing loss occurred (this Friday!).
The LFP monthly payment rate, applied based on the conditions outlined in the previous section, is equal to 60% of the lesser of either the monthly feed cost:
- For all covered livestock owned/leased or
- Calculated by using the normal carrying capacity of the eligible grazing land of the eligible producer.
Total LFP payments to a producer will not exceed five monthly payments for the same kind, type, and weight range of livestock. Payment limits for LFP (without regard to any other program) are set at $125,000. AGI rules apply.
2020 Payment Rates for Common Livestock Species
Payments are calculated on per head per payment month basis. For example, assume that a given county grazing forage sorghum can show evidence of loss from drought. As a result, they are eligible for payments in 2020. Now, assume that produces in that county would be eligible for three monthly payments. If they were grazing 10, 500+ pound beef calves their payment would be:
Payment = Payment Rate * Payment Months = ($23.92/head * 10 head) * 3 = $717.60
Eligible Crops by County
The maps below represent the number of LFP-eligible commodity months by county. Now, using the 2020 Payment Rates table above and the number of eligible months from a select county below, you can estimate your total LFP payment for a given crop in a given county. For example, assume the county discussed in the previous example was Dallam county. Using the combination of the table above and the county map below, you can see that Dallam county is, in fact, eligible for three monthly payments for forage sorghum. So, the calculation above holds. Instead, lets consider Swisher county forage sorghum as our payment crop. Using the map below you can see that Swisher county is eligible for four mothly payments. If they were grazing 10, 500+ pound beef calves their payment would be:
Payment = Payment Rate * Payment Months = ($23.92/head * 10 head) * 4 = $956.80
Remember, the signup deadline is at the end of this week! Be sure to check in with your FSA office prior to the deadline.
Annual Rye Grass
Full Season Improved Pasture
Long Season Small Grains
Short Season Fall Winter Small Grains
Short Season Small Grains
Short Season Spring Small Grains