Crops > Cost & Return > Government Payments

Payments under 2014 Farm Bill safety net provide small cushion for producers in many Iowa counties

pdf fileAgDM Newsletter
November 2016

Final data on 2015 county level yields was recently released by the USDA Farm Service Agency. This is the final information needed for calculating payment rates under the ARC-CO program. The Marketing Year Average (MYA) Prices for the marketing year starting September 1, 2015 and ending August 31, 2016 were released at the end of September. Final National MYA prices for the 2015 marketing year were $3.61 for corn and $8.95 for soybeans. The payments released by FSA starting in October 2016 are for crop acres enrolled during the 2015 crop year.

Payments under the 2014 Farm Bill are tied to the base acres on a farm and are not influenced by the crop grown in the payment year.

ARC-CO payments

Figures 1 and 2Figures 1 and 2 give ARC- CO payments by base acre for corn and soybeans. Under the ARC-CO program, producers receive payment on 85 percent of their base acres. This 15 percent reduction is factored into the values seen in the images. Furthermore, a 6.8 percent deduction is applied due to the Federal government’s sequestration of the budget. Farms enrolled in ARC-CO in seven counties (Appanoose, Decatur, Henry, Lucas, Marion, Monroe, Washington), all located in the South Central and Southeast portion of the state will not see a payment for corn or soybean acres. Eight counties (Clarke, Jefferson, Keokuk, Pottawattamie, Ringgold, Van Buren, Warren, Wayne) will receive a payment on soybean acres, and not on corn, and farms in another 26 counties will receive a corn payment and no soybean payment (Adair, Bremer, Buena Vista, Calhoun, Carroll, Cerro Gordo, Clay, Davis, Dickinson, Emmet, Floyd, Franklin, Guthrie, Hancock, Howard, Humboldt, Kossuth, Madison, Mitchell, Monona, Palo Alto, Pocahontas, Sac, Winnebago, Worth, Wright). Base acres enrolled in ARC-CO in the remaining fifty-eight counties will receive a payment at some level for both crops.

PLC payments

With the 2014 Farm Bill, Iowa producers had two options to choose from, ARC (county or individual) or PLC. The PLC program provided a safety net for producers should the MYA prices be below the set reference prices of $3.70 for corn and $8.40 for soybeans. No payments were seen in Iowa under the PLC program for 2014, but a small payment will be received for corn base acres enrolled in PLC for 2015. The payment per bushel will be $0.07 (after 6.8 percent sequestration), and based on yield information at the farm level. Producers were given the option to update their yield information with FSA during program sign-up.

Statewide payments

The average ARC-CO payment per base acre on corn was $33.51 and $15.68 for soybean acres in Iowa. With over 22 million base acres in the state enrolled in ARC-CO or PLC, estimated payments for Iowa producers under ARC-CO for the 2015 marketing year is approximately $646 million with another $3.8 million going towards corn base acres enrolled in PLC.

More information on the 2014 Farm Bill, including Decision Tools to see detailed calculations of payments by county is available on Ag Decision Maker. For other maps of payments, visit the CARD Farm Bill Mapping Tool. Projections for 2016/17 payments are updated regularly as information is released by USDA FSA.


Alejandro Plastina, extension economist, 515-294-6160,
Ann M. Johanns, extension program specialist, 641-732-5574,