April 6, 2020
**Another Scam Alert**
If you receive an email like the one pictured below it is NOT from American Honey Producers Association.
It is a scam.
Note the "from" <email address>, it is not an AHPAnet.com email address and is not from Kelvin Adee.
DO NOT respond to the email and report it immediately to your email provider.
Are you available to assist? I am out of the State now and I've got credence in you to take care of this.I would have called your phone but I presently do not have access to my mobile phone.
American Honey Producers Association (AHPA) ,needs some gift cards for donation to Veterans at Hospice and Palliative care units for preventive items against Corona Disease( COVID 19). I have decided to make it a personal duty. I will be responsible for the reimbursement.
Although these are unusual times, let’s do one thing as usual in April: Let’s take the Bee Informed Partnership’s annual Colony Loss and Management Survey!
Just click here:
The information that you provide will be invaluable to our understanding of honey bee health around the country.
Since 2006, many thousands of beekeepers have answered the BIP National Loss Survey. This has enabled us to document and better understand long-term honey bee colony loss trends in the United States. Check out the interactive state loss map to see the results throughout all the survey years!
Those of you that have previously participated in the BIP National Loss Survey, know that it has changed and expanded over the years.
For example, we added questions related to management in 2010 to help us understand how your actions influence colony survivorship. Thanks to the endurance of our participants to answer the entire survey, we have developed a dynamic management data tool.
This year’s most obvious change is that you will be asked to create a login before taking the survey. We make changes, with the goal to continuously improve the survey based on your comments and suggestions. We thank you for input! A login will enable you to take the survey in more than one sitting, and to edit the initiated survey later. Additionally, we will be quicker in assisting you with any issues you may experience during the survey. Do not worry all the information you provide is confidential and will not be distributed to any 3rd party, EVER!
You do not have to go into this survey blindly. If you would like to know what questions to expect, or if you want to take notes during your colony checks, download the 2019-2020 National Colony Loss and Management Survey Preview. Please do not mail this version back to us; this is solely a preparation for the real deal. Once you are ready: Take the survey here!
Whether you are a survey-regular or a new-Bee, we appreciate you taking some time out of your busy schedule to fill out this year’s survey from all over the country.
Now Live – 2019-2020 Colony Loss & Management Survey!
Given the circumstances, we hope everyone is staying healthy these days! Spring is proliferating, with fields of blooming clover, pollen-covered cars, and the buzz of flying bees.
FSA Makes Changes to Farm Loan, Disaster, Conservation and Safety Net Programs to Make it Easier for Customers to Conduct Business
FSA Services Available by Phone Appointment Only
WASHINGTON, D.C., March 26, 2020 – USDA’s Farm Service Agency (FSA) county offices are open by phone appointment only until further notice, and FSA staff are available to continue helping agricultural producers with program signups, loan servicing and other important actions. Additionally, FSA is relaxing the loan-making process and adding flexibilities for servicing direct and guaranteed loans to provide credit to producers in need.
FSA Service Centers are open for business by phone appointment only. While our program delivery staff will continue to come into to the office, they will be working with our agricultural producers by phone and using email and online tools whenever possible.
“FSA programs and loans are critical to America’s farmers and ranchers, and we want to continue our work with customers while taking precautionary measures to help prevent the spread of coronavirus,” FSA Administrator Richard Fordyce said. “We recognize that farm loans are critical for annual operating and family living expenses, emergency needs and cash flow through times like this. FSA is working to find and use every option and flexibility to provide producers with credit options and other program benefits.”
FSA is delivering programs and services, including:
Farm Storage Facility Loan program;
Disaster assistance programs, including signup for the Wildfire and Hurricane Indemnity Program Plus (this includes producers now eligible because of losses due to drought and excess moisture in 2018 and 2019);
Safety net programs, including 2020 signup for the Agriculture Risk Coverage and Price Loss Coverage programs;
Conservation programs; and
Relaxing the Farm Loan-Making Process
FSA is relaxing the loan-making process, including:
Extending the deadline for applicants to complete farm loan applications;
Preparing Direct Loans documents even if FSA is unable to complete lien and record searches because of closed government buildings. Once those searches are complete, FSA would close the loan; and
Closing loans if the required lien position on the primary security is perfected, even for loans that require additional security and those lien searches, filings and recordings cannot be obtained because of closed government buildings.
Servicing Direct Loans
FSA is extending deadlines for producers to respond to loan servicing actions, including loan deferral consideration for financially distressed and delinquent borrowers.
FSA will temporarily suspend loan accelerations, non-judicial foreclosures, and referring foreclosures to the Department of Justice. The U.S. Attorney’s Office will make the determination whether to stop foreclosures and evictions on accounts under its jurisdiction.
Servicing Guaranteed Loans
Guarantee lenders can self-certify, providing their borrowers with:
Subsequent-year operating loan advances on lines of credit;
Emergency advances on lines of credit.
FSA will consider guaranteed lender requests for:
Temporary payment deferral consideration when borrowers do not have a feasible plan reflecting that family living expenses, operating expenses and debt can be repaid; and
Temporary forbearance consideration for borrowers on loan liquidation and foreclosure actions.
FSA will be accepting additional forms and applications by facsimile or electronic signature. Some services are also available online to customers with an eAuth account, which provides access to the farmers.gov portal where producers can view USDA farm loan information and payments and view and track certain USDA program applications and payments. Customers can track payments, report completed practices, request conservation assistance and electronically sign documents. Customers who do not already have an eAuth account can enroll at farmers.gov/sign-in.
FSA encourages producers to contact their county office to discuss these programs and temporary changes to farm loan deadlines and the loan servicing options available. For Service Center contact information, visit farmers.gov/coronavirus.
ASSISTANCE FOR AMERICAN WORKERS AND FAMILIES
In the weeks immediately after the passage of the CARES Act, Americans will see fast and direct relief in the form of Economic Impact
Payments. For more information, CLICK HERE.
ASSISTANCE FOR SMALL BUSINESSES
The Paycheck Protection Program prioritizes millions of Americans employed by small businesses by authorizing up to $349 billion toward job retention and certain other expenses.
Small businesses and eligible nonprofit organizations, Veterans organizations, and Tribal businesses described in the Small Business Act, as well as individuals who are self-employed or are independent contractors, are eligible if they also meet program size standards.
For a top-line overview of the program CLICK HERE
If you’re a lender, more information can be found HERE
If you’re a borrower, more information can be found HERE
The application for borrowers can be found HERE
PRESERVING JOBS FOR AMERICAN INDUSTRY
The CARES Act assists eligible businesses looking for payroll support to keep Americans working. For more information, CLICK HERE.
Letter Regarding Farm Bill Conservation Program
April 2, 2020
The Honorable Sanford Bishop Jr., Chairman
House Agriculture Appropriations Subcommittee
The Honorable John Hoeven, Chairman
Senate Agriculture Appropriations Subcommittee
The Honorable Jeff Fortenberry, Ranking Member
House Agriculture Appropriations Subcommittee
The Honorable Jeff Merkley, Ranking Member
Senate Agriculture Appropriations Subcommittee
Dear Chairman Bishop, Chairman Hoeven, Ranking Member Fortenberry, and Ranking Member Merkley:
The undersigned organizations urge you to protect farm bill conservation program mandatory funding as you consider agriculture appropriations legislation for fiscal year 2021. We further request that you provide robust discretionary funding and support for NRCS field staff, as technical assistance is essential for the delivery of conservation support for farmers and ranchers across the country.
In the 2018 Farm Bill, Congress reaffirmed the importance of voluntary, incentive-based conservation by maintaining level funding for the conservation title. Demand for the Environmental Quality Incentives Program (EQIP) and Conservation Stewardship Program (CSP) consistently exceeds available dollars by at least two to one; in some years, USDA has been forced to turn away as many as three-quarters of eligible applicants. We are pleased that, since fiscal year 2018, appropriations legislation included no cuts to these programs below authorized levels, and we urge you to ensure that these programs remain fully funded in the FY 2020 appropriations bill as well.
Full funding for conservation programs such as EQIP, CSP, Regional Conservation Partnership Program (RCPP), Conservation Reserve Program (CRP), and Agricultural Conservation Easement Program (ACEP) is critical to enable farmers, ranchers, and foresters across the country to conserve water, maintain their soil, protect farmland and wetlands, create and maintain fish and wildlife habitat, and produce abundant food and fiber. The funding already authorized for these programs should be protected as a vital investment in the infrastructure of rural America and in our future. Conservation support for healthy soil, clean water, and overall farm viability is essential as farmers struggle to stay afloat.
In addition to leaving farm bill conservation funding intact, we urge you to provide at least $840 million for Conservation Operations, including $749 million in critical funding for Conservation Technical Assistance (CTA).
NRCS field staff provide direct technical assistance and planning support for farmers and ranchers across the country, and USDA’s ability to deliver conservation programs depends heavily on on-the-ground technical assistance. CTA provides landowners with the site-specific solutions needed to implement conservation practices on their lands, while providing accountability to ensure maximum return on the public investment. On-the-ground capacity continues to be a limiting factor for conservation implementation, and we must not hamstring our investment in conservation by under-funding technical assistance.
Funding for conservation support is more important now than ever, as farmers, ranchers, and rural communities continue to endure a multiyear slump in the farm economy. Any further cuts to voluntary conservation programs would severely limit the ability of farmers to protect water quality, build soil health, create and maintain habitat for threatened, endangered, or economically important fish and wildlife, and prepare for and manage drought and flooding. Cuts to farm bill conservation programs through the FY 2021 appropriations process would severely limit the number of qualified farmers able to access the programs, leading to more pollution as well as less productive and profitable farmlands as soil erodes and nutrients are lost.
As the Subcommittees develop FY 2021 appropriations bills, we urge you to reject any cuts to conservation programs, and to provide at least $840 million in discretionary funding for Conservation Operations, including $749 million for Conservation Technical Assistance.
American Farmland Trust
American Honey Producers Association
American Seed Trade Association
American Society of Agronomy
American Water Works Association
Association of Fish & Wildlife Agencies
Association of State Floodplain Managers
CA Climate & Agriculture Network (CalCAN)
Center for Rural Affairs
Chesapeake Bay Foundation
Church Women United in New York State
Coastal Enterprises, Inc.
Crop Science Society of America
Defenders of Wildlife
Environmental Defense Fund
Environmental Working Group
Farmer Veteran Coalition
Food Animal Concerns Trust (FACT)
Good Food Brigade
Greater Atlanta Pollinator Partnership
Illinois Stewardship Alliance
Institute for Agriculture and Trade Policy
Izaak Walton League of America
Johns Hopkins Center for a Livable Future
Land Improvement Contractors of America
Land Trust Alliance
Louisiana Hypoxia Working Group
Lowcountry Biodiversity Foundation
Maine Farmland Trust
Maine Organic Farmers and Gardeners Association
Michael Fields Agricultural Institute
Montana Organic Association
National Association of Conservation Districts
National Association of State Conservation Agencies
National Association of State Foresters
National Audubon Society
National Center for Appropriate Technology
National Farmers Union
National Organic Coalition
National Parks Conservation Association
National Sustainable Agriculture Coalition
National Wildlife Federation
National Young Farmers Coalition
Natural Resources Defense Council
New Jersey Conservation Foundation
Northeast Organic Dairy Producers Alliance
Northeast Organic Farming Association of Vermont
Northeast Organic Farming Association-Interstate Council
Northeast Sustainable Agriculture Working Group
Ohio Ecological Food and Farm Association
Pesticide Action Network North America
Practical Farmers of Iowa
Rural & Agriculture Council of America
Society for Range Management
Society of American Foresters
Soil and Water Conservation Society
Soil Science Society of America
The Conservation Fund
The Nature Conservancy
The Wildlife Society
Theodore Roosevelt Conservation Partnership
Toxin Free USA
Union of Concerned Scientists
United States Cattlemen's Association
Virginia Association for Biological Farming
Virginia Foodshed Capital
Water Environment Federation
Western Landowners Alliance
Wild Farm Alliance
World Wildlife Fund
Purple Loosestrife - Biological control - American Honey Producers Association - AHPA-Chuck Kutik
Fake Honey Solution - American Honey Producers Association - Honey Adulteration - Chris Hiatt