Iowa Secretary of Agriculture Mike Naig announced Monday that the Iowa Department of Agriculture and Land Stewardship is continuing the Iowa Disposal Assistance Program to support Iowa farmers. Pork and egg producers forced to euthanize and dispose of market-ready and weaned pigs or layer hens because of supply chain disruptions caused by COVID-19 are eligible for the fourth round of IDAP funding.
"Iowa is the largest producer of pork and egg products and our farmers have been unduly affected by supply chain disruptions caused by the COVID-19 pandemic," says Secretary Naig. "The disposal assistance program is just one way the state is trying to help producers through this very difficult time."
Iowa's pork producers have made extremely difficult decisions over the past several months as COVID-19-related worker shortages caused meat processing facilities to reduce production. Pork producers donated to food security programs benefiting Iowa food banks and pantries, changed animals' diets to slow the rate of growth and explored other markets to sell their products. While processing capacity has increased, the challenges continue.
Iowa's egg producers have also faced distribution and disposal challenges because of COVID-19-related closures. Iowa is home to over 58 million egg-laying hens. Nearly 70% of Iowa's layer flocks produce for the liquid egg market and are destined for restaurants, schools and other foodservice markets. When COVID-19 caused many of these establishments to shut down, the demand for liquid eggs plummeted. Liquid egg prices dropped by 68%, forcing many egg producers to reduce the size of their flocks. As a result, the Iowa Department of Agriculture expanded the IDAP program to include Iowa egg producers in round four funding.
IDAP Round Four eligibility
The following Iowa producers can now apply for round four disposal assistance.
- Pork producers who euthanized and properly disposed of market-ready hogs between June 23 and July 20. Eligible producers may receive $40 per market-ready hog (weighing at least 225 pounds).
- Pork producers who euthanized and properly disposed of weaned pigs between May 1 and July 20. Each approved applicant may receive $4 per weaned pig (up to 25 pounds).
- Egg producers who euthanized and properly disposed of laying hens between April 1 and July 20. Each approved applicant may receive 25 cents per layer hen.
Eligible producers must apply by 11:59 p.m. Central on Aug. 6. All producers must provide documentation, including proof of proper disposal and an affidavit from their herd veterinarian confirming impending welfare issues, to receive funding. All paperwork must be received by the Department of Agriculture by 11:59 p.m. Central on Aug. 14.