Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act (CARES)

March 31, 2020 Ohio Soybean Association

In late March, Congress passed a $2 trillion economic stimulus package that included a $14 billion replenishment to the U.S. Department of  Agriculture’s (USDA) Commodity Credit Corporation (CCC) authority and earmarked additional money for livestock and specialty crop producers as well as local agriculture. The additional spending authority allows for USDA to make additional Market Facilitation Program (MFP) payments this year. By comparison the 2019 MFP payments were authorized up to $14.5 billion and approximately $14.3 billion has been paid out to date.

A separate funding stream of $9.5 billion has been provided to USDA, “to prevent, prepare for, and respond to coronavirus by providing support for agricultural producers impacted by coronavirus, including producers of specialty crops, producers that supply local food systems, including farmers markets, restaurants, and schools, and livestock producers, including dairy producers.”

Other agriculture related highlights include:

  • An extension of the term of the non-recourse marketing loan has been provided from the usual 9-month term to a 12-month term.
  • Rural broadband language is included.

Aquaculture businesses are eligible for assistance made available through the Department of Commerce.