National Farmer's Day - October 12, 2003
Did you know over 40 percent of our nation's total land area is used to produce crops and livestock? There are over 425 million acres of land used to grow crops in the U.S., more than any other country in the world. Since the mid-1930's, the farming industry has gone through a number of changes. The number of farms has decreased from a high of 6.8 million in 1935 to 2.1 million today. At the same time, average farm size has increased, representing increasing consolidation, efficiencies, and the use of scientific farming methods. Agriculture remains a vital part of our nation's economy, as the U.S. produces a significant portion of the world's farming output, and is the world's main exporter of agricultural products. To recognize the contributions of our nation's farmers, ranchers and agricultural workers, October 12 is National Farmer's Day. As we celebrate National Farmer's Day, is highlighting a few of the benefit programs available to our nation's farmers.

  • Commodity Marketing Assistance and Loan Deficiency Payments

  • This program provides loans to assist farmers in marketing their commodity crops and, as a result, improve and stabilize farm income. For more information visit

  • Crop Insurance

  • Crop Insurance protects agricultural producers against crop losses resulting from circumstances beyond the producer's control. The program, which is administered by USDA's Risk Management Agency (RMA), offers several different plans of Multiple Peril Crop Insurance (MPCI) policies for most crops. Availability of these crop policy plans varies by state and county. For more information visit

  • Emergency Loan Assistance for Agricultural Producers

  • The Emergency Loan Assistance Program aims to assist established (owner or tenant) family farmers, ranchers and aquaculture operators with loans to recover from production and physical losses resulting from major and/or natural disasters. These loans can be used for annual farm operating expenses, and other essential needs necessary to return disaster victims' farming operations to a financially sound basis in order that they will be able to return to private sources of credit as soon as possible. For more information visit

  • Farm Operating Loans

  • The Farm Service Agency (FSA) offers farm operating loans to farmers who are temporarily unable to obtain private, commercial credit. Operating loans may be used to purchase items needed for a successful farm operation. These items include livestock, farm equipment, feed, seed, fuel, farm chemicals, repairs, insurance, and other operating expenses. For more information visit