USDA Invests $2 Million in Risk Management Education for Historically Underserved and Small-Scale Producers
WASHINGTON, January 10, 2022 – The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) is investing up to $2 million in cooperative agreements this year for risk management education and training programs that support historically underserved producers, small-scale farmers, and conservation practices. USDA’s Risk Management Agency (RMA) is investing in organizations, such as nonprofit organizations, universities, and county cooperative extension offices, to develop training and education tools to help producers learn how to effectively manage long-term risks and challenges.
“Agriculture is an inherently risky business, and a strong farm safety net is key to sustaining and ensuring the success of American producers,” said RMA Administrator Marcia Bunger. “We’re committed to improving access to crop insurance, and our partnerships with organizations help us reach communities that have historically lacked access to training and resources. We want to make sure all producers know and understand how to manage risk and what options are available to them.”
RMA works with partners to assist producers, especially historically underserved, farmers and ranchers, in effectively managing long-term risks and challenges. RMA re-established its support of risk management education in 2021, investing nearly $1 million in nine risk management education projects. From 2002 to 2018, RMA provided annual funding for risk management education projects, supporting more than $126 million worth of projects in historically underserved communities.
How to Apply
A broad range of risk management training activities are eligible for funding consideration, including training on Federal crop insurance options, record keeping, financial management, non-insurance-based risk management tools, and natural disaster preparedness among others. Partners can also train farmers at all levels on risk management options that help secure local food systems.
This selection process is competitive, and RMA will prioritize projects focused on underserved, organic, and specialty crop producers. Additionally, organizations providing training related to climate change, wildfire response, local foods, and urban ag will also be given stronger consideration.
Federal crop insurance helps farmers and ranchers manage risks that are part of agriculture, such as adverse weather and market fluctuations, strengthening the rural economy, especially after disasters.
Crop insurance is sold and delivered solely through private crop insurance agents. A list of crop insurance agents is available at all USDA Service Centers and online at the RMA Agent Locator. Learn more about crop insurance and the modern farm safety net at www.rma.usda.gov.
Today’s announcement builds on other USDA efforts to ensure equity in program delivery. In 2021, USDA’s Farm Service Agency invested $4.7 million to establish 56 partnerships to provide outreach and technical assistance to historically underserved farmers and ranchers, and USDA’s Natural Resources Conservation Service announced its plans to invest $50 million in cooperative agreements for a similar effort.
USDA touches the lives of all Americans each day in so many positive ways. In the Biden-Harris Administration, USDA is transforming America’s food system with a greater focus on more resilient local and regional food production, fairer markets for all producers, ensuring access to safe, healthy and nutritious food in all communities, building new markets and streams of income for farmers and producers using climate smart food and forestry practices, making historic investments in infrastructure and clean energy capabilities in rural America, and committing to equity across the Department by removing systemic barriers and building a workforce more representative of America. To learn more, visit www.usda.gov.
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