Ag News

Georgia counties receive disaster declarations for spring freezes

On July 31, the USDA issued primary disaster declarations for 24 Georgia counties to help farmers mitigate their losses caused by freeze events in March and April.

Georgia agricultural producers who suffered losses and damages due to recent natural disasters may be eligible for U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Farm Service Agency (FSA) emergency loans emergency loans, which are made available under the authority of the Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue for losses caused by two separate disaster events. For more information on the emergency loans visit

For the freeze occurring from March 8-23, the USDA designated Appling, Atkinson, Bacon, Ben Hill, Brantley, Charlton, Clinch, Coffee, Echols, Glynn, Irwin, Jeff Davis, Lanier, Long, Lowndes, Montgomery, Pierce, Treutlen, Ware and Wayne counties as primary natural disaster areas. Producers in the contiguous counties of Berrien, Brooks, Camden, Cook, Emanuel, Johnson, Laurens, Liberty, McIntosh, Tattnall, Telfair, Tift, Toombs, Turner, Wheeler and Wilcox counties are also eligible to apply for emergency loans.

For the freeze occurring on April 17, 2018, the USDA designated Fannin, Gilmer, Towns and Union counties in Georgia, primary natural disaster areas. Producers in the contiguous counties of Dawson, Gordon, Habersham, Lumpkin, Murray, Pickens, Rabun and White are also eligible to apply for emergency loans.

Producers in all designated primary and contiguous counties will have until March 4, 2019, to apply for emergency loans to help cover part of their actual losses.

FSA will consider each loan application on its own merits, taking into account the extent of losses, security available and repayment ability. FSA has a variety of programs, in addition to the emergency loan program, to help eligible farmers recover from the impacts of this disaster.

Interested farmers may contact their local USDA Service Centers for more information on eligibility requirements and application procedures for these and other programs. Additional information is also available online at