Citrus Block Grant Funding Coming Soon

Daniel CooperCitrus, hurricane, Industry News Release

whip

The Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services and Florida Citrus Mutual continue to push for the prompt disbursement of funds associated with Hurricane Irma relief. Mutual is optimistic the Hurricane Irma Block Grant program administered by the Division of Emergency Management (DEM) will begin in earnest next week. Administrators of the Block Grant will hold an internal Florida Citrus … Read More

Lawmakers Sign Off on Money for Citrus Farmers

Daniel CooperCitrus, hurricane, Industry News Release

citrus

Gov. Rick Scott said the state will “soon” begin accepting applications from citrus farmers whose crops and groves were damaged by Hurricane Irma, after the Joint Legislative Budget Commission accepted $357 million in federal funding for the industry on July 19. “It’s great that the LBC approved this funding today,” Scott tweeted. “We look forward to continuing to work with … Read More

Lawmakers Poised to Approve Citrus Farmer Money

Daniel CooperCitrus, hurricane, Industry News Release

citrus

Gov. Rick Scott on Wednesday urged the Joint Legislative Budget Commission to approve $340 million in federal block grant funding to help the state’s hurricane-ravaged citrus industry. The money was part of a $2.36 billion disaster-relief package approved by Congress in February. The state Division of Emergency Management will administer the money, leading to the issue going before the Legislative … Read More

WHIP Signup Officially Open

Tacy Callieshurricane, Industry News Release

hurricanes

Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue announced that agricultural producers affected by hurricanes and wildfires in 2017 now may apply for assistance to help recover and rebuild their farming operations. Signup begins July 16, 2018, and continues through November 16, 2018. “Hurricanes and wildfires caused billions of dollars in losses to America’s farmers last year. Our objective is to get relief funds … Read More

Grower Discusses Hurricane Relief Funds

Ernie Neffhurricane

Vic Story was one of hundreds of growers who attended Florida Citrus Mutual-sponsored meetings in early July describing how Hurricane Irma relief funding will work. “We got hit pretty hard in places last year, and we didn’t pick as much fruit as we thought we were going to, especially earlies (early-season oranges),” Story says. “And so, we can use some … Read More

Set Up WHIP Appointment Now

Abbey Taylorhurricane, Industry News Release, Legislative, Weather

By Mike Sparks We wrapped up the fourth Wildfire and Hurricane Indemnity Program (WHIP) meeting in Fort Pierce yesterday with a large crowd at the Agricultural Research Service facility. All told, Florida Citrus Mutual (FCM) and the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) hosted almost 800 attendees during the week. If you didn’t attend one of the events, we have some … Read More

Growers Hear About Hurricane Recovery Funding

Ernie Neffhurricane

hurricane

Approximately 120 growers attended a Monday night meeting in Lake Alfred to learn about eligibility and application requirements for federal relief funds in the wake of Hurricane Irma. Irma hit the Florida citrus industry hard in September 2017. The federal government only recently ironed out details of a citrus relief program for growers totaling hundreds of millions of dollars. The … Read More

USDA Encourages Grower Attendance at WHIP Meetings

Abbey Taylorhurricane, Industry News Release, Weather

hurricanes

The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Farm Service Agency will hold several information sessions in Florida about the Wildfires and Hurricanes Indemnity Program (WHIP). The meetings are the first step in the Hurricane Irma relief package. The USDA is encouraging all growers who wish to participate in WHIP to attend at least one meeting. Below are the dates, times and … Read More

The Road to Recovery

Tacy Callieshurricane

Growers discuss lessons learned from Hurricane Irma, replanting plans, grove rehabilitation, crop insurance and more. By Tacy Callies Florida citrus growers awaiting Hurricane Irma federal aid and insurance payouts are doing their best to keep crops healthy until more money is available. Paul Meador, citrus grower and head of Everglades Harvesting & Hauling in LaBelle, took a big hit from … Read More

Rucks on Citrus Varieties and Industry Recovery

Ernie NeffHLB Management, hurricane, Varieties

HLB

Phil Rucks of Phillip Rucks Citrus Nursery weighs in on the increasing demand for late versus early orange varieties, the impact of Hurricane Irma and HLB. Rucks notes that over the past 30 years, the demand for early-season oranges versus late-season oranges has essentially reversed. In the past, he says, early varieties accounted for about 60 percent of plantings. Now, … Read More

Irma Citrus Relief Package Moving Forward

Daniel CooperCitrus, hurricane, Industry News Release

citrus

Florida Citrus Mutual (FCM) is thankful U.S. Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue recently unveiled additional details about the Florida Citrus Irma Relief Package. The package will total $465 million and will include the Wildfire Hurricane Indemnity Program (WHIP) at $125 million and a block grant program at $340 million. WHIP will be administered by the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Farm Service … Read More

Crafting Details of the Florida Citrus Hurricane Recovery Block Grant

Abbey Taylorhurricane

florida

Last week, the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) announced a $340 million block grant that will go toward Florida citrus growers for Hurricane Irma losses to production expected during the 2018 through 2020 crop years. It includes reimbursement for the cost of buying and planting replacement trees – including resetting and grove rehabilitation – and for repair of damages to … Read More

Exclusive: Perdue Discusses Hurricane Aid for Growers

Abbey TaylorCitrus, hurricane

On May 1, the U.S. Department of Agriculture released details about the 2017 Wildfires and Hurricanes Indemnity Program (WHIP), which includes financial aid to growers impacted by Hurricane Irma and other natural disasters. The information covered everything from eligibility to the formula that will be used to calculate payments. AgNet Media’s Abbey Taylor had the opportunity to get some exclusive … Read More

Perdue Announces Florida Citrus Hurricane Recovery Details

Abbey TaylorCitrus, hurricane, Industry News Release

scott

(Washington, D.C., May 1, 2018) – Under the direction of President Donald J. Trump, U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue today announced new details on eligibility for a new U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) disaster program, 2017 Wildfires and Hurricanes Indemnity Program (2017 WHIP). Additionally, USDA will provide $340 million through a block grant to the state of Florida for Hurricane … Read More

Post-Irma Ag Relief Could Come Soon

Daniel CooperCitrus, hurricane, Industry News Release

citrus

Florida farmers awaiting federal disaster relief to help cover losses from Hurricane Irma last September may learn more details this week about the highly anticipated program. The $2.36 billion Wildfires and Hurricanes Indemnity Program (WHIP) is expected to offer a direct-payments model that would not hold growers to traditional payment limitations and would establish a state-managed program to handle tree … Read More

Perdue to Rooney: Expect Citrus Disaster Relief Plan Next Week

Tacy Callieshurricane

On April 18, U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue announced that the details of the $2.3 billion disaster relief program for Florida citrus growers impacted by Hurricane Irma will be finalized by next week. Congressman Thomas J. Rooney (R-FL), who spearheaded the relief effort, issued the following statement in response: “Today, Secretary Perdue reassured Florida citrus producers that he is working to make sure that disaster relief is made … Read More

Sales Tax Rebate for Growers Who Suffered Hurricane Damage

Daniel Cooperhurricane, Industry News Release

citrus

The Florida Legislature and Governor Rick Scott have approved a sales tax rebate program for agricultural producers and growers who suffered damages due to Hurricane Irma. Florida Farm Bureau has offered a dedicated webpage as a resource to farmers and ranchers who can take advantage of this opportunity at www.FloridaFarmBureau.org/hurricanetaxrebate. On March 23, Governor Rick Scott signed a sales tax … Read More

Rucks Discusses Hurricane Damage and Delays

Ernie Neffhurricane

hurricane

The damage that Hurricane Irma inflicted on citrus nurseries and citrus groves in September caused long delays in tree deliveries to growers, says Phil Rucks, owner of Phillip Rucks Citrus Nursery in Frostproof. Rucks says 59 of the state’s 77 citrus nurseries sustained some degree of damage in the hurricane. Much of the nursery damage wasn’t repaired for half-a-year as … Read More

Scott Urges Quick Action on Agriculture Aid

Daniel CooperCitrus, financial, hurricane, Industry News Release

scott

Gov. Rick Scott is asking U.S. Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue to move quickly to get disaster-relief funding into the hands of Florida citrus growers, as it may be another three months before farmers can start to apply for the money. In a letter Tuesday, Scott also asked Perdue to “customize federal aid for Florida citrus growers” to meet their needs. … Read More

Irma Agriculture Aid Slated to Start in Summer

Daniel CooperCitrus, hurricane, Industry News Release

florida

A program to distribute federal disaster aid to Florida farmers hit by Hurricane Irma will be set up within the next 100 days, U.S. Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue announced Friday. “USDA (the U.S. Department of Agriculture) is working as quickly as possible to develop procedures and a system by which affected producers can access disaster assistance,” Perdue said in a … Read More