The Coronavirus Food Assistance Program, often known as CFAP, was criticized for leaving out some producers and possibly treating some other participants unfairly. Now, the U.S. Department of Agriculture is continuing to review the program, with a decision "anticipated in the weeks ahead," according to a written statement released Feb. 25 by the ag department.
USDA suspended the processing of payments under the Coronavirus Food Assistance Program - Additional Assistance and halted implementation in order to evaluate the program on the first day of the Biden-Harris administration.
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According to USDA:
"CFAP Additional Assistance, which expanded eligibility for some agricultural producers and commodities, is under review. The Farm Service Agency ( an arm of USDA) is eliminating the Feb. 26 deadline for CFAP Additional Assistance and will continue to accept applications during the evaluation period. Producers will be given at least an additional 30 days to sign up after any decision is announced. Payments from the CFAP 2 signup that ended Dec. 11 have not been impacted in any way."
"USDA remains focused on helping producers who have been hurt by market disruptions due to the pandemic, trade disputes and extreme weather. USDA has been gathering feedback to identify gaps in the previous rounds of assistance."
In a conference call with the news media, also on Feb. 25, Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack said, "The bottom line is, we want to do this the right way."