The USDA’s Risk Management Agency says it will continue to defer accrual of interest for 2019 crop year insurance premiums to help farmers hit hard by extreme weather. 

More specifically, USDA will defer the accrual of interest on 2019 crop year insurance programs to the earlier of the applicable termination date or January 31 of 2020, for all policies with a premium billing date of August 15, 2019. 

The extension is necessary because harvest has been very delayed, and crop insurance claims typically aren’t settled until after the harvest. 

That puts an even bigger squeeze on farmers and their cash flow. 

USDA Undersecretary for Farm Production and Conservation Bill Northey made the announcement during the NAFB convention in Kansas City. 

“USDA is committed to helping farmers and ranchers impacted by the weather challenges this year, and we hope this deferral will help ease cash flow challenges for producers, many of whom are dealing with serious harvest delays.” 

The extended deferral builds on other steps USDA has taken to support farmers and ranchers impacted by flooding and other disasters. 

More than $3 billion in assistance is available through the disaster-relief package passed by Congress and signed by President Trump.