Yesterday, USDA’s Farm Service Agency (FSA) announced a major expansion to the microloan program. Starting on November 7th, the cap on microloans will be raised from $35,000 to $50,000. We are thrilled to see FSA expand this program that is critical to young farmers!
Microloans provide operating loans to small and beginning farmers. They have less paperwork than a typical FSA loan and allow for a repayment period as long as seven years. Since the program’s inception, over 7,300 microloans have been made.
Currently, about a quarter of all microloans are made at the maximum amount of $35,000. FSA estimates that the expansion of the loan program will impact 900 borrowers per year. Of those borrowers, FSA forecasts that 100 will be new borrowers.
NYFC was a strong advocate for the microloan program’s creation in 2012 and expansion in the 2014 Farm Bill. FSA originally created this program by making an administrative change; in the 2014 Farm Bill, Congress formally codified the program in law and authorized the current expansion.
Think a microloan might be right for you? Get started by finding your local FSA office.