The USDA's Farm Service Agency has extended the Russet potato diversion deadline from May 13 to June 12, 2001. The change is the result of an amendment filed May 11, 2001.
Growers now have until June 12 to divert any type of variety of fresh Russet potatoes from the 2000 crop. Eligible diversions include charitable donations, live stock feed, ethanol production or other means rendering them unmarketable. All potatoes offered must meet specific minimum U.S. Grade standards and must be inspected and certified by federal or federal-state inspectors.
About $10,250,000 has been allocated for the program. So far producers have been offered about $1 per cwt. However, if more potatoes than 10,250,000 bags are diverted, producers may only be paid on a percent of the potatoes diverted.
Growers may file applications at their local FSA office. All requests must be completed, signed and returned to the FSA office between June 13 and July 13, 2001.