Farmers confused or overwhelmed by the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) Farm Service Agency’s (FSA) new Microloan program process are in luck: the Farmers’ Legal Action Group (FLAG) recently released a guide, Farmer’s Guide to the Farm Service Agency Microloan Program.
This guide walks readers through what to expect when applying for microloans, paying off the loans, or dealing with any repayment problems. It also provides information on creating and following a farm business plan and how to appeal a denial of an application.
Many farmers who apply for the microloan program have never taken out a loan for their farming operations either because they recently grew to a size that cannot farm without operating credit, or because they have been unaware that credit was available at this smaller scale. This new program, revised in January 2013, makes loans up to $35,000 to farmers for farm operating expenses.
The publication is available free for download on the FLAG website or hardcopies can be purchased for $12.50 each plus shipping by calling their office at 651.223.5440.