Farmers in Texas can apply for drought loans from the USDA

NEW ORLEANS (AP)-The U.S. Department of Agriculture says the drought during the growing season has caused farmers in most of Texas, all of Louisiana and parts of Arkansas and Mississippi to be eligible to apply for assistance. and federal.

The department’s Farm Service Agency said low-interest emergency loans can be used to meet a variety of recovery needs including replacing equipment or pets. They can also be used to reorganize a farming operation or refinance certain debts.

The agency will consider the extent of losses, security available and solvency.

The agency says 60 Louisiana parishes are the main disaster areas due to the drought, and the other four – Orleans, St. Louis. Tammany, Vernon and Washington – are adjacent to such parishes.

The USDA declares drought disasters if a county is under severe or exceptional drought, or has had at least eight consecutive weeks of severe drought.

In Texas, 216 of the state’s 254 counties are major drought disaster areas and 20 others border such counties, FSA state outreach coordinator Joshua Coleman said Friday.

Twenty-three Mississippi counties and 20 in Arkansas are major disaster areas, where farmers and ranchers are eligible to apply for loans in another 13 counties in Mississippi and 11 in Arkansas, according to released news.

Application deadlines vary according to when a county is declared an agricultural disaster area. That and other details are available on the Farm Service Agency website,