U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue announced that the deadline for farmers to sign up for the Market Facilitation Program has been extended to February 14, 2019. The original deadline was January 15, 2019. Remember the Market Facilitation Program was developed to provide direct payments to farmers that were caught in the trade war with China. Farmers saw the price of soybeans drop about 2 dollars a bushel after the trade war with China began. Pork Producers saw a big drop in prices too.

The deadline was extended because County Farm Service Agency offices have been closed since December 28, 2018 because of the Federal Government shutdown. A few County Farm Service Agency offices have been open the last couple days however they could not process Market Facilitation Program Payments. Now, starting Thursday January 24, 2019 all Minnesota Farm Service Agency offices will be open for the next 2 weeks and they will be able to process Market Facilitation Program payments. Secretary Perdue also said "other program deadlines may be modified and  will be announced when they are addressed."