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Ag-loss records vital to pay claims

A top agriculture official is urging livestock farmers nationwide to keep thorough records if they hope to receive compensation for losses related to winter storms in the upper Midwest or drought conditions in the West.

Juan Garcia, U.S. Department of Agriculture Farm Service Agency Administrator, made the appeal Friday.

“The 2014 Farm Bill provides a strong farm safety net to help ranchers during these difficult times,” Garcia said in a statement. “We’ll provide producers with information on new program requirements, updates and signups as the information becomes available. We know these disasters have caused serious economic hardships for our livestock producers.”

The Farm Service Agency recommends owners and producers record all pertinent information of natural disaster consequences including:

•Number and kind of livestock that have died, supplemented if possible by photographs or video records of ownership and losses

•Dates of death supported by birth recordings or purchase receipts

•Costs of transporting livestock to safer grounds or to move animals to new pastures

•Feed purchases if supplies or grazing pastures are destroyed

•Crop records, including seed and fertilizer purchases, planting and production records

•Pictures of on-farm storage facilities that were destroyed by wind or flooding

•Evidence of damaged farmland

Go to or an FSA county office to learn more about FSA programs and loans. For information about USDA’s Farm Bill implementation plan, go to