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UA Bee Blog

Changes to ELAP Affect Beekeepers

by Jon Zawislak - June 10, 2020

The USDA's Emergency Assistance for Livestock, Honey Bees, and Farm-raised Fish Program (ELAP) provides emergency assistance to eligible producers of livestock, honeybees and farm-raised fish.  It covers losses due to an eligible adverse weather or loss condition, including blizzards and wildfires, as determined by the Secretary of Agriculture.  ELAP covers losses that are not included under other disaster assistance programs, such as the Livestock Forage Disaster Program (LFP) and the Livestock Indemnity Program (LIP).

Recent ELAP changes that could potentially affect beekeepers in 2020 include:

  • Removal of the ELAP program from the $125,000 payment limitation.
  • Reimbursement of 90 percent of the cost of losses for socially disadvantaged, limited resource, beginning or veteran beekeepers.
  • New calendar-year basis and deadline for 2020 losses.
  • Fifteen days to file a "honey bee notice of loss" once the loss is apparent (previously thirty days was allowed).

To better understand how the program works, what it covers, and how to apply, watch or download a recorded webinar presented by Amy Mitchell, Special Programs Manager, USDA Farm Service Agency .  She will discuss changes to this program that affect beekeepers (presented by the American Beekeeping Federation):

ELAP is administered by the Farm Service Agency (FSA) of the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA).  For more information on the program, visit or contact your local FSA County Office to see if your claim qualifies for this program.

Good record keeping is vital to processing a claim.  Arkansas beekeeping operation are encouraged to take advantage of the Arkansas Department of Agriculture's Apiary Inspection Service.  An on-site colony inspection will help you maintain clear records of colony numbers and health.  Without a reliable paper trail, ELAP claim processing could be delayed or denied.