Program options still available for farmers

​June 25, 2019

It's not too late for producers to get more coverage for their farm businesses. The government offers a suite of risk management programs to help farmers manage risks during challenging seasons like this one. These programs are cost-shared with government, making them affordable options.

Ontario farmers who are concerned about 2019 production losses, market disruptions or increased costs still have time to enrol in the following government programs.

AgriStability – for large income declines

Producers now have until July 2 to enrol in AgriStability. AgriStability can help if a producer's whole farm income falls below 70 per cent of their recent average. AgriStability covers a variety of risks and there are no planting deadlines.

Whether an income drop is due to inability to plant, production loss, weather challenges or severe market volatility, AgriStability has producers covered.

Recent changes to AgriStability under the Canadian Agricultural Partnership make it more responsive to severe economic losses. Producers are now guaranteed a reference margin of at least 70 per cent of their average net income – no matter how low their expenses are. This means an increased potential for AgriStability payments when producers really need it.

AgriStability is now easier than ever to enrol in. Less information about farming history is required, meaning less paperwork to submit. To enrol in AgriStability, visit or call Agricorp at 1-888-247-4999.

Benefits of AgriStability

  • Affordable – $315 for every $100,000 of reference margin
  • Guarantees producers a reference margin of at least 70 per cent of their average net income
  • Covers a variety of risks
  • No planting deadlines
  • Helps with cash flow when unexpected disasters happen – interim payments are available
  • Easier to enrol – less paperwork to submit
  • Can be used to leverage financing

How AgriStability can help – an example

The Martin family has an average farm income of $207,000. They pay a fee of $653.50 to participate in AgriStability for 2019. Unfortunately, they have a difficult year. Bad weather and crop failure cause a severe drop in their farm income to $80,000. Because they are guaranteed a reference margin of 70 per cent of their average net income, and AgriStability provides 70 per cent coverage, the Martins receive an AgriStability payment of $45,430 to help offset their loss.

Payment  = [($207,000 x 70%) – $80,000] x 70% coverage
= ($144,900 – $80,000) x 70%
= $45,430

For the full details of this fee and payment calculation, see the AgriStability information sheet on and discover how AgriStability can help.

Production Insurance for cover crops

For producers who did not enrol in Production Insurance plans for grains and oilseeds by the May 1 deadline, or for producers who were unable to plant crops by the planting deadlines, there's still time to secure coverage for summer-seeded forage crops. This will be particularly useful for those seeking feed options for livestock.

The new forage seeding plan for summer-seeded crops offers establishment protection for the purpose of producing forage or pasture or for soil conservation. Coverage is available for a variety of crops, including soybeans, alfalfa, clover, grasses and oats. The plan can help offset preparation and seed costs if the crop does not germinate. The deadline to apply is August 1.

A producer who has secured Production Insurance coverage by May 1 may be eligible to receive an unseeded acreage benefit and then summer seed and insure a forage crop on the same acreage in the same year. For more information about the new forage seeding plan, visit

AgriInvest payments available when needed

Ontario producers currently have about $331 million in AgriInvest accounts. AgriInvest, delivered by Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada (AAFC), is a savings account with matching government contributions. Producers with AgriInvest accounts can withdraw funds at any time to help overcome risk or make other investments.

Producers can still apply for AgriInvest by submitting their 2018 tax information by the following dates:

  • June 30 – corporations that participate in AgriStability submit Statement A forms to Agricorp (the deadline for individuals was June 15 and has already passed)
  • September 30 – corporations that don't participate in AgriStability submit Statement A forms to Agricorp; individuals who don't participate in AgriStability submit T1163 forms to Canada Revenue Agency

Producers can also apply later, up to December 31, but the matching government contribution will be reduced by five per cent for each month the information is submitted late.

Once AAFC receives a producer's tax information, they calculate their maximum matchable deposit and send a deposit notice. The producer can then deposit up to 100 per cent of their allowable net sales in an AgriInvest account, and the first one per cent is matched by governments. The maximum government contribution is $10,000 per year.

For more information about AgriInvest, visit

APP provides low-interest cash advances

The Advance Payments Program (APP), delivered by the Agricultural Credit Corporation (ACC), is a federal loan guarantee program that provides low-interest cash advances to producers. These loans provide marketing flexibility, allowing producers to sell their commodity at the most opportune time. Advances are available on over 500 crop and livestock products across Canada.

Based on recent changes announced by the Government of Canada, eligible producers can now receive advances of up to $1 million, with the first $100,000 being interest free. For canola production, the first $500,000 is interest free for 2019 program year loans.

For more information about the Advance Payments Program, visit the ACC website at or call 1-888-278-8807 to complete an application over the phone.

Commodity Loan Guarantee Program

The Commodity Loan Guarantee Program, also delivered by ACC, supports farmers by providing access to operating loans for the purchase of crop input supplies, such as seed, fertilizer and pesticides. Under the program, qualifying farmers can borrow up to $750,000 at prime interest rate, which can be paid off within 23 months or as the crop is sold.

Contact ACC at 1-888-278-8807 to complete an application over the phone. 

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