USDA Farm Service Agency (FSA) Administrator Bruce Nelson announced Feb. 29 that equine operations that breed, raise, and sell certain types of horses are now eligible for loan assistance under FSA's emergency loan program.
"To help keep American agriculture profitable, USDA immediately responds to disasters across the country--ranging from record floods, droughts, and tornadoes--with direct support, disaster assistance, technical assistance, and access to credit," said Nelson. "This policy modification will help certain equine operations when they face losses due to drought, flooding, other natural disasters or quarantine. A strong farm safety net, including emergency credit, is critical to sustain the success of American agriculture."
Emergency loan funds can be used to:
- Restore or replace essential property;
- Pay all or part of production costs associated with the disaster year (the calendar year in which the disaster occurred);
- Pay essential family living expenses;
- Reorganize the farming operation; and
- Refinance certain debts.
Emergency loans can be made to farmers and ranchers who own and operate lands in a county or contiguous county to a county declared by the President or designated by the Secretary of Agriculture as a disaster area. Producers can borrow up to 100% of actual production or physical losses up to a maximum of $500,000. Terms of the loans include an interest rate of 3.75% and repayment over a period of one to 40 years depending on the nature of the loss and the collateral available to secure the loan.
Disclaimer: Seek the advice of a qualified veterinarian before proceeding with any diagnosis, treatment, or therapy.