John Smythe, state executive director for USDA’s Farm Service Agency in California announced that the sign-up period for the 2005-2007 Crop Disaster Program (CDP) will end Feb. 27, 2009.

“In 2007, Congress authorized CDP as a special disaster recovery program for agriculture to assist farmers and ranchers hit hard by natural disasters that occurred from 2005 through 2007, and it is now coming to a close,” said Smythe. “The new farm bill provides an array of new and continued risk management and disaster assistance programs for crop and livestock producers for 2008 through 2011.”

The ending date of Feb. 27 applies to the receipt of a signed and completed FSA-840 application along with all supporting documentation and required forms at the applicable county FSA office. CDP quality claims as well as quantity claims are still being accepted for review until this deadline. Sign-up information and required forms are available at each county FSA office. Late filed applications will not be approved after the Feb. 27 deadline.

All application determinations will be made by March 27, 2009. For further questions about CDP and the sign-up deadline, producers may contact their county FSA office or visit FSA's Web site at www.fsa.usda.gov.