USDA offers variety of agricultural opportunities

FSA hiring; NRCS seeks mentors; commodities added

As federal

agencies begin reopening offices and resuming

programs after several months of closure,

opportunities could provide benefits for the

agricultural world.

USDA adding eligible

The USDA is expanding its Coronavirus

Food Assistance Program to provide direct

payments to offset pandemic impacts for

price declines of 5 percent or higher between

mid-January and mid-April.

Eligible commodities include wool; livestock

such as cattle, hogs, lambs and yearling

sheep; dairy; specialty fruit and vegetable

crops with a range from apples to blueberries

to watermelons, cabbage to rhubarb and taro.

Nuts, beans, mushrooms and many “nonspecialty”

grains and wheats are on the list.

Now the USDA is asking growers to identify

more commodities it could include in the

CFAP with “a particular interest” right now

in nursery products, aquaculture products

and cut flowers.

“USDA has established a process for the

public to identify additional commodities for

potential inclusion in CFAP. Specifically,

USDA is looking for data on agricultural

commodities that are not currently eligible

for CFAP that the public believes to have


• Suffered a 5-percent or greater price decline

between mid-January and mid-April as

a result of the COVID-19 pandemic,

• Shipped but subsequently spoiled due to

loss of marketing channel, or

• Not left the farm or remained unharvested

as mature crops.”

FSA jobs

With USDA offering many support programs,

the Farm Service Agency is hiring

full-time temporary program technicians.

These employees would help at the field

level and perhaps do some work remotely.

“Successful applicants must be reliable,

have a professional attitude and enjoy working

with the public,” according to the FSA.

For more information or to email a resume,

send a message to [email protected]

FSA is also beginning to allow in-person

office visits by appointment only. Sublette

County’s closest FSA offices are Rock

Springs and Casper. Online and phone services

are still available to customers. For

more information, go to

CAMP mentors

USDA’s Natural Resource Conservation

Service just launched its Conservation Agricultural

Mentoring Program, a state-driven

program to match experienced producers

who are “passionate about conservation and

teaching” with an NRCS field employee that

is new to the job or new to the area in an 12-

to 18-month partnership.

“Our goal through the program is to grow

critical relationships with the producers we

serve, while at the same time advancing employee

knowledge of production agriculture

and natural resources in their local area, ultimately

enhancing our ability to provide excellent

customer service,” the NRCS release


Three sets of people are involved – volunteer

producers to be mentors, NRCS and

conservation district new employees or with

less than three years experience and NRCS

and conservation district employees to supervise

participating employees.

A producer mentor will take out an employee

six to 12 times a year to teach and

share common practices, equipment, daily

challenges, local resource concerns and

conservation practices to address those concerns.

“Producer mentors provide a safe, lowrisk

learning environment for employees to

advance their knowledge,” it says.

For more information or to sign up for

as a CAMP mentor, contact Wyoming coordinator

Andi Neugebauer at [email protected] or 307-233-6763.