The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) announced Friday, Oct. 30, as the deadline to submit disaster aid applications for the Wildfire and Hurricane Indemnity Program–Plus (WHIP+) for 2018 and 2019 losses.
USDA did not originally specify a deadline when the program was announced.
“The physical and financial loss experienced by farmers and ranchers impacted by natural disaster events in 2018 and 2019 was widespread and catastrophic,” Richard Fordyce, USDA Farm Service Agency (FSA) administrator, said. “Fortunately, in addition to our already extensive suite of disaster assistance programs for crop and livestock producers, we were able to provide additional support through WHIP+. If you have not yet submitted your application for assistance, please don’t miss your chance.”
WHIP+ compensates farmers and ranchers for losses due to hurricanes, floods, snowstorms, tornadoes, typhoons, volcanic activity, drought, excessive moisture and wildfires occurring in calendar years 2018 and 2019.
Drought and excessive moisture were added as eligible losses for the program in March 2020.
To date, FSA has received more than 133,000 applications for WHIP+ disaster assistance and paid out nearly $1.4 billion in WHIP+ benefits.
FSA will launch a new tool on the farmers.gov WHIP+ webpage to help farmers and ranchers understand eligibility for the program and whether they had possible losses in 2018 and 2019. The tool will also allow farmers and ranchers an opportunity to provide information for FSA staff to reach out to them.
FSA will announce soon the details for farmers and ranchers who experienced quality loss from 2018 and 2019 natural disaster events authorized in appropriations legislation. There will be a separate signup period for producers reporting quality loss.