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Enroll in ARC or PLC by September 30

In early 2015, you selected PLC or ARC as the coverage program that was right for your farm for the next five years. While that deadline has come and gone, there is another critical deadline approaching. To receive your program payments, you still need to sign up each year, and this year’s deadline is in less than two weeks.

“These programs provide important risk protection for farm operations, so it is important not to miss the deadline for enrollment,” says Val Dolcini with the USDA FSA. “Producers have already elected ARC or PLC, so now is the time to sign the contract and enroll for the 2014 and 2015 crop years.”

There are a large number of farmers who have yet to enroll. “At this time, just over half of the farm units have enrolled, and the program sign-up deadline is September 30,” says Al Kluis, a commodities analyst and broker. 

The low number of sign-ups is due primarily to confusion about the enrollment process, says John Whitaker, state executive director for the Iowa FSA. "Many farmers think they are done because they have already updated their basis and yields as well as made their crop insurance selection," he says. "This will be the third time farmers come to an FSA office this year, but they must do that to enroll for the 2014 and 2015 crop years."

The consequences of missing the deadline will be costly. “Many northern Corn Belt farmers in the ARC-Co program will be collecting a $70- to $80-per-acre payment on corn and $20 to $40 per acre for soybeans on 2014 crops,” explains Kluis. “If you miss the program sign-up deadline, you will not be paid.”

If you are one of the farmers who hasn't enrolled yet, call your FSA
office and make an appointment. "There is always a rush toward the end
of a deadline," says Whitaker. "If you have an appointment, you will get through quicker than
people who walk in. It takes 10 minutes to sign up per contract."

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