CPDA has written to USDA Secretary Sonny Perdue requesting that the Department consider an extension of the final planting dates for insured crops in those states where farmers have experienced the devastating impacts of the natural disasters that have severely disrupted the 2019 growing season. In its June 7, 2019 letter sent to the Secretary, CPDA pointed out that if USDA moves forward at this time with making prevented planting payments to those farmers, acreage that could otherwise be planted will instead remain idle for the remainder of this year’s growing season. “This will negatively impact all parts of the agricultural supply chain including companies that manufacture, formulate and distribute products that farmers rely on for crop production and pest control,” CPDA stated. Rather than abandoning this year’s planting season as a total loss, CPDA urged USDA to consider a possible interim remedy in the form of an extension of the final planting deadline dates as recommended by the Agricultural Retailers Association (ARA) in a June 4, 2019 letter to Secretary Perdue. The ARA letter addressed USDA’s implementation of the Additional Supplemental Appropriations for Disaster Relief Act of 2019, signed into law by President Trump on June 6, to provide $4.6 billion to USDA for agricultural-related losses, emergency timber restoration, farmland repair, and watershed recovery work.

ARA explained that should farmers choose not to plant in 2019 and instead take prevented planting compensation, retailers who provide seed, seed treatment, fertilizer and other inputs for that crop will suffer the negative consequences that come from holding unsold product. CPDA emphasized that similarly, many companies which manufacture or supply tank-mix spray adjuvants and pesticides sold by retailers will be adversely affected as demand for their product falls due to reduced acreage being planted. 

“The time-sensitive nature of the growing season and the logistics involved in transporting product requires that companies develop their manufacturing plans well in advance of the beginning of the planting season,” CPDA stated. “Product must be readily available to meet the needs of the farmer within a very narrow window as the growing season progresses. A change in planting intentions from what was originally expected will have serious implications for companies that are left with excess product inventory that cannot be moved should there be a significant reduction in planted acreage resulting in lower demand.”

CPDA concluded its letter by reiterating its support of the recommendation made by ARA calling for an extension of the final planting date deadlines. CPDA joined with ARA in emphasizing that this is a remedy that would meet the needs of growers who want to farm their land as well as those who serve the growers. To learn more please read the letters from CPDA and ARA.