USDA Farm Service Agency (FSA) State Executive Director Daniel Robinson urges producers who want to purchase 2012 coverage through the Non-insurable Crop Disaster Assistance Program (NAP) to do so before the Sept. 1 sales closing date.

NAP provides financial assistance to producers of non-insurable crops when low yields, loss of inventory or prevented planting occur due to normal disasters.

"Purchasing a crop insurance policy is an easy way for producers to practice risk management," said Robinson. "This year alone has proved that natural disasters can directly affect the profitability and recovery of agricultural operations," he said.

Several Alabama crops have a NAP application closing date of Sept. 1, including, but not limited to aquaculture, crustacean, ornamental nursery, Christmas trees, honey, sod, ginseng root, and clover seed.

Also, Sept. 30 is the NAP application closing date for several crops, including, but not limited to, barley, canola, Austrian peas, winter oats, rye seed, rapeseed, strawberries, triticale, vetch, and wheat.

In order to meet eligibility requirements for NAP, crops must be non-insurable, commercially-produced agricultural commodity crops for which the catastrophic risk protection level of crop insurance is not available.

If the Risk Management Agency (RMA) offers coverage for a crop in the county, then NAP coverage is not available for that crop.

In the event of a natural disaster, NAP covers the amount of loss greater than 50 percent of the expected production based on the approved yield and reported acreage.

Eligible producers can apply for NAP coverage using form CCC-471, Application for Coverage.

Producers must file the application and pay the service fee at their local FSA Office by the applicable NAP application closing date deadline.

The service fee is the lesser of $250 per crop or $750 per producer per administrative county, not to exceed a total of $1,875 for a producer with farming interests in multiple counties.

Limited resource producers may request a waiver of service fees, if certain criteria are met. Limited resource producer status can be determined using the USDA Limited Resource Farmers and Rancher Online Self Determination Tool at www.lrftool.sc.egov.usda.gov.

For more information on sales closing dates and NAP, contact your local County FSA office or visit the FSA website at www.fsa.usda.gov.