Due to the overwhelming amount of water flowing down the Mississippi – the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers had to open the Morganza Spillway this weekend as part of a flood risk management plan designed to minimize damage to property, structures and to protect millions of people from historic flood levels. Ag Secretary Tom Vilsack and FEMA Administrator Craig Fugate issued a joint statement assuring producers affected by the opening of the spillway in Louisiana that they will be eligible for crop insurance indemnities if they purchased crop insurance and their crops have been damaged by flooding. Producers unable to plant who have purchased crop insurance will be eligible for prevented planting payments in accordance with their policy.
USDA has been coordinating with federal partners to evaluate how to provide relief to farmers and others impacted by the natural disaster. Vilsack and Fugate say FEMA and USDA will continue working together to do everything they can to help mitigate the damage caused by the flooding and protect the families, farmland and communities they serve.