Press Release

Rep. Cuellar Announces $16 Billion Direct Assistance to Farmers through the Coronavirus Food Assistance Program

Producers of agricultural commodities can apply starting on May 26

Washington | Charlotte Laracy, DC Press Secretary (202-226-1583); Alexis Torres, District Press Secretary (956-286-6007), May 21, 2020

Washington, D.C.—Congressman Henry Cuellar (TX-28) announced $16 billion in direct payments to deliver relief to America’s farmers and ranchers impacted by the coronavirus pandemic. Specifically, the Coronavirus Food Assistance Program (CFAP) will provide financial assistance to farmers and ranchers who have suffered a five-percent-or-greater price decline due to COVID-19 and face additional significant marketing costs as a result of lower demand, surplus production, and other disruptions.


“The COVID-19 pandemic has damaged our food systems and caused major financial losses for our farmers and ranchers,” said Congressman Cuellar. “These payments will support the agricultural industry while market demand returns and our nation recovers. As senior member of the Agriculture Subcommittee on Appropriations, I am committed to fighting for Texas farmers and ranchers who are facing an unprecedented situation as our nation tackles the coronavirus.”


As a senior member of the Agricultural Subcommittee on Appropriations, Congressman Cuellar helped secure $16 billion for the CFAP within the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Stability (CARES) and the Commodity Credit Corporation Charter Act. The first source of funding is $9.5 billion in appropriated funding provided in the CARES Act to compensate farmers for losses due to price declines that occurred between mid-January 2020, and mid-April 2020 and provides support for specialty crops for product that had been shipped from the farm between the same time period but subsequently spoiled due to loss of marketing channels. The second funding source uses the Commodity Credit Corporation Charter Act to compensate producers for $6.5 billion in losses due to on-going market disruptions.


Producers can apply for assistance beginning on May 26, 2020. Additional information and application forms can be found here.