How to Get a Farm Subsidy

The federal government provides farm subsidies, also known as agricultural subsidies, to help farmers manage the production and maintenance costs of running their businesses. Subsidies can supplement a farmer's income and as well as provide funds for rental payments for land and assistance when the market price of a crop is low. Farm subsidies also play a role in the cost and availability of certain agricultural commodities. Farmers who want to receive federal subsidies may apply to several programs, especially if the crops they produce are among the most sought after commodities.


  1. Image titled Get a Farm Subsidy Step 1
    Contact the Farm Service Agency office in your state.
    • There are state and local level Farm Service Agency offices. Drop by your local office to pick up the appropriate enrollment forms to get a farm subsidy or download them from your state Farm Service Agency's website.
  2. Image titled Get a Farm Subsidy Step 2
    Determine which farm subsidy you will apply for.There are several federal subsidy programs available. Check with your local Farm Service Agency office to get help determining which programs your farm is eligible for enrollment.
    • One of the more popular programs is the Conservation Reserve Program (CRP), which provides annual rental payments based on the value of the eligible farm land.
    • The Counter-Cyclical Payments (CCPs) program provides financial supplement to farmers when retail prices for crops drop.
    • Disaster Payments are a type of farm subsidy that provides financial support to farmers whose land, crops, or livestock have been damaged or lost due to a natural disaster such as a tornado or drought.
  3. Image titled Get a Farm Subsidy Step 3
    Find out what type of government subsidized crop and animal insurance is available in your area. Your local Federal Service Agency office can provide information for locating insurance agents.
  4. Image titled Get a Farm Subsidy Step 4
    Determine if your farm is eligible for the Direct Payment subsidy program. This subsidy is paid out to owners of farmland initiated into the program during its inception in 1996. The payments remain the same every year regardless of the current economic climate or the price of crops.
  5. Image titled Get a Farm Subsidy Step 5
    Ask about the special loan programs the federal government has available for new farmers and ranchers who have been in business for at least three years but less than ten years.


  • Subsidies are primarily awarded to farmers who produce the following crops: corn, wheat, rice, soybeans and rice.
  • There are a variety of loans available in the federal subsidy program. These loan programs allow farmers to use their crop as collateral and repay loans based on the profits or losses from the eventual sale of their crops.
  • The agricultural commodity that receives the most payouts from federal subsidy programs is corn.
  • Some subsidy programs have specific enrollment periods, while others accept applications on an on-going basis.
  • There are emergency disaster loans available that allow farmers to borrow up to $500,000.


  • Small farms often do not receive the same large payouts of federal subsidies as corporate farms.

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Categories: Farming