USDA Offers to Make Farm Management Easy Through New Web Tools

USDA has recently launched two new features on farmers.gov to help growers manage their farm loans and navigate the application process for H-2A visas.

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In 2018, farmers.gov was launched as a mobile-friendly public website combined with an authenticated portal where growers will be able to apply for programs, process transactions, and manage accounts.

Navigating the H-2A Visa Process

The new H-2A Phase I release includes an H-2A Visa Program page and interactive checklist tool, with application requirements, fees, forms, and a timeline built around a grower’s hiring needs.

Over the next several months, USDA will collaborate further with the U.S. Department of Labor on farmers.gov H-2A Phase II – a streamlined H-2A Visa Program application form, regulations, and digital application process that moves producers seamlessly from farmers.gov website to farmers.gov portal to U.S. Department of Labor’s IT systems.

Managing Farm Loans Online

Customers can access the “My Financial Information” feature by a desktop computer, tablet, or phone. They can now view:

  • loan information;
  • interest payments for the current calendar year (including year-to-date interest paid for the past five years);
  • loan advance and payment history;
  • paid-in-full and restructured loans; and
  • account alerts giving borrowers important notifications regarding their loans.

To access their information, growers will need a USDA eAuth account to login into farmers.gov. After obtaining an eAuth account, producers should visit farmers.gov and sign into the site’s authenticated portal via the “Sign In / Sign Up” link at the top right of the website.

Currently, only growers doing business as individuals can view information. Entities, such as an LLC or Trust, or producers doing business on behalf of another customer, cannot access the portal at this time, but access is being planned.

Google Chrome, Mozilla Firefox, or Microsoft Edge are the recommended browsers to access the feature.