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Sen. Kevin Cramer requests USDA up the value on newborn calves under Livestock Indemnity Program

Sen. Kevin Cramer has asked the U.S. Department of Agriculture to raise the assistance level for newborn calves under the Farm Service Agency's Livestock Indemnity Program and to look into “whether the weight categories under LIP should be reexamined.”

Blizzard in Ray, North Dakota
Ranchers in North Dakota worked hard to keep calves alive in recent blizzards, including this scene in Ray, North Dakota. Sen. Kevin Cramer is asking USDA to review the payments provided through the Livestock Indemnity Program when the number of newborn calves exceeds normal mortality.
Contributed / Desserae Anderson
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Sen. Kevin Cramer has asked the U.S. Department of Agriculture to raise the assistance level for newborn calves under the Farm Service Agency's Livestock Indemnity Program and to look into “whether the weight categories under LIP should be reexamined.”

Cramer, in a letter to FSA Administrator Zach Ducheneaux, pointed out that the 2022 LIP fact sheet indicates the payment rate per head for non-adult beef cattle weighing less than 250 pounds ($175.27) falls far below the going rate for a calf that size. The average price for calves that size, Cramer wrote, is $393, with a range of about $250 to about $500. With LIP paying out 75% of an animal's value, producers could receive $294.

“North Dakota suffered from Blizzard Haley and the subsequent snow, ice, rain, and wind storms which resulted in cattle producers having a number of their livestock perish, particularly calves. Thankfully, the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Livestock Indemnity Program (LIP) is in place to assist producers who had above normal livestock fatalities as a direct result of the storms. Unfortunately, as producers have familiarized themselves with LIP, they have expressed concerns the payment rate for calves under 250 pounds does not accurately compensate them for the losses they incurred,” Cramer wrote. 

Cramer pointed out the dual problems producers in North Dakota have faced since last year, starting with the 2021 drought that reduced feed sources and the 2022 spring storms, which have further stressed feed and bedding supplies as well as leading to the loss of calves.

“It is critical these producers receive meaningful relief as soon as possible,” Cramer wrote. 

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Read the full letter here:

Sen. Cramer letter to FSA about LIP by inforumdocs on Scribd

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