Florida farmers and any ag-related business can apply for the Paycheck Protection Program to keep employees on the payroll during the COVID-19 quarantine.

The COVID-19, also called Coronavirus, quarantine has affected a lot of different businesses, including Florida’s ag industry. The U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) overheads the program, which is part of the federal Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act, known as the CARES Act, which approved $2 Trillion in relief. According to a Citrus Industry article, Florida’s Agriculture Commissioner, Nikki Fried, has recommended that growers and other agriculture-related businesses apply for the PPP. See the details below.

Florida Farmers and the Paycheck Protection Plan

According to the article, “The PPP loans are designed to provide a direct incentive for small businesses to keep their workers on the payroll. The loans will be provided on a first-come, first-served basis.” The loans will be forgiven by the SBA if “all employees are kept on the payroll for eight weeks and the money is used for payroll, rent, mortgage interest, or utilities.” Small businesses with under 500 employees are eligible; this includes sole proprietorships, independent contractors, and self-employed individuals.

Interested applicants should apply through existing SBA 7(a) lender or through any federally insured deposit institution, are federally insured credit union, any Farm Credit System institution that is participating, and any additional regulated lenders that get approved, according to the article. Loans will start to be processed on April 3rd, and the program will be available through June 30th of 2020. The application can be accessed here.

Griffin Fertilizer is committed to helping both growers and ranchers make sound agronomic and economic decisions in order to maximize the health of their grove and pasture. As a full-service custom dry & liquid fertilizer blender and crop protection product distributor, we will continue our mission to further advance Florida agriculture. For questions or concerns about your farm or pasture, contact us and one of our team will be in touch.