As you likely know, the federal government shut down as of midnight eastern time. If you haven’t been to the USDA’s website yet, take a gander and I’ll be right here waiting for your return.
What services are available from the USDA? This chart, if you search for the USDA, outlines what is and is not open. Of interest to this audience, meat and poultry inspections continue, as does grain inspections, and the loans backed by the Rural Development Division will be monitored. The Farm Service Agency is shutdown and in operation only for emergency and natural disaster response. The National Resources Conservation Service is shutdown with the exception of protection of life and property. The Risk Management Agency is shutdown and no employees will be at their offices. Market analysis, forecasts, and analysis will not be provided because the Agricultural Statistical Service and Economic Research Service will be closed.
Please keep in mind that the above concerns the government shutdown and as more information becomes available, this post will be updated. This post does not address the Farm Bill Continuing Resolution which also expires today. More than the Farm Bill situation Thursday.
Update: The National Farmers’ Union has a nice rundown of the implications of the shutdown. Of note:
Farm program payments for crops planted in 2013 would continue after the farm bill expires September 30. However, payments would not be able to be delivered under a government shutdown.
Update 2: The Wall Street Journal also discusses the implications for farm program payments and market projections, statistics, and analysis.