BILLINGS — The U.S. Department of Agriculture has extended the deadline for producers to apply for the Quality Loss Adjustment Program (QLAP) to assist those whose eligible crops suffered quality losses due to qualifying 2018 and 2019 natural disasters.
Like many other producers, pulse growers were affected by natural disasters in 2018 and 2019 which resulted in lots of pulse acres being sold at a discounted price as feed quality. To help, the USDA has extended the deadline to April 9 for producers to apply.
“Because of recent winter storms and some program updates, we want to provide five additional weeks for producers to apply for the program,” said Zach Ducheneaux, Administrator of the Farm Service Agency (FSA). “I want to make sure eligible producers have the opportunity to apply and to work with our team members to help with any questions. We recently clarified policy to ensure producers who sold grain to the feed market due to quality issues are adequately compensated.”
Tim McGreevy of the American Pulse Association explained, "We want to appeal to those growers who did suffer a quality loss, especially in 2018 and 2019, mostly 2019, because that's when we had the big rains. You get in and you talk to your county FSA offices and you sign up for pulses. Even though they'll say you don't have the right documentation yet and all that, forget it, just get in there and sign up for it.
McGreevy says this is a real opportunity for pulse growers to recoup some of the money lost when they had to sell their crop into the feed channels because of these qualified natural disasters: "There's no question. If you had a chickpea crop where a large chickpea that was trading at 18 to 20 cents at that particular time, you basically got pennies on the dollar when you sent it into the feed channels. It was a monumental loss and crop insurance didn't cover the entire loss. You may have got a little bit of compensation if you were in the revenue protection program, but mostly you just took it on the chin because you sold it into the feed channels. It was sprouted and just not suitable for food and human consumption."