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Disaster Assistance Programs

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In the past decade, temporary ad hoc disaster assistance payments was the typical mechanism used to aid agricultural producers, including peach growers, that had been adversely affected by natural disasters. However, given the ad hoc nature of this approach, these temporary disaster assistance payments have been difficult to manage fiscally. In the 2008 Farm Bill, officially known as the Food, Conservation and Energy Act of 2008, the SURE program was created as part of more permanent disaster legislation for agricultural producers. The SURE program is administered through the Farm Service Agency (FSA).

SURE is a new type of disaster assistance program. Most of the past disaster programs made payments based on individual crop losses and were often tied to base acres for either direct payments or countercyclical payments. SURE is a whole-farm disaster assistance program that is tied to crop insurance coverage and farm planted acreage. In a nutshell, if actual crop revenue from all crops (and all disaster and insurance payments) is less than the SURE guarantee, a SURE payment makes up 60 percent of the difference. SURE is tied to crop insurance because you need to have crop insurance coverage (i.e. NAP or AGR-Lite for blueberry growers) to be eligible for the program.

For more information about the SURE program click here for a fact sheet and click here for a detailed paper.

Written By

Paige Burns, N.C. Cooperative ExtensionPaige BurnsCounty Extension Director & Extension Agent, Agriculture - Horticulture Call Paige Email Paige N.C. Cooperative Extension, Richmond County Center

Contributing Author

Michael Parker, N.C. Cooperative ExtensionDr. Michael ParkerExtension Horticulture Specialist and Associate Professor (Tree Fruits / Pecans) Call Dr. Michael Email Dr. Michael Horticultural Science
NC State Extension, NC State University
Page Last Updated: 6 months ago
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