All sectors of agriculture, including produce, specialty crops and horticulture, will be included in a $16 billion direct payment plan to be submitted to the White House this week by USDA Secretary Sonny Perdue. The secretary also told Farm Journal Live that the plan will also include $2-3 billion in food purchases to be send to the nation’s food banks.
“This first tranche is probably going to 16 to 18 billion dollars, 16 [billion] in direct payments to our producers, really in all of our sectors, including cattle, livestock, cow-calf operations, hogs, as well as produce, specialty crops, commodities that have been hurt and then the dairy sector,” Perdue said. “And other extraneous things like horticulture. Any kind of ag producer will be available for direct payments. And then we're also going to have about a two to three billion dollar purchasing program trying to take this dislocated food out of our supply chain that had been going into food service institutions and move it back into our food banks and other non-profits to help provide the needed food for people who are staying at home.”
Perdue said the administration will re-evaluate the direct payment and food purchase programs again later in the year to determine if a second tranche is needed.
Farm Journal Live is a daily newscast hosted by AgDay’s Clinton Griffiths streamed live at noon Central every weekday on AgWeb.com