Grain Bins


How to prepare for your ARC-PLC decision: Webinar from SD Corn

Posted on February 17, 2021
ARC PLC blog image

The deadline is fast approaching for farmers to make their annual choice of farm bill safety net program. By March 15, farmers across the country must decide if they will enroll in the Agriculture Risk Coverage (ARC) or Price Loss Coverage (PLC) program.

ARC/PLC is a safety net program created by the USDA to help farmers and ranchers with the fluctuating prices of commodity crops, including corn, soybeans, oats and wheat. The program provides income support payments to farmers based on different factors depending on which program you choose.

ARC- support payments given on historical base acres when actual crop revenue declines below a specific guaranteed level. The most used version of the is the ARC-County, where payments are based on a county-level benchmark.

PLC- support payments given on historical base acres when the final national average cash price for a commodity falls below the reference price. Some of the key reference prices are:

  • Corn: $3.70/bu

  • Soybeans: $8.40/bu

  • Wheat: $5.50/bu

What’s New:

For the 2021 crop year farmers can change their ARC-PLC choices from the selection they made in the 2019 and 2020 crop years. This decision is different from the previous decision that applied to the 19/20 crop years in that this choice is only for one year and the yields and pieces aren’t known yet. The first projections from the USDA of the 2021-22 marketing year cash prices for crops won’t be out until the May Supply and Demand report, nearly a month after the election deadline.

A new county-based crop insurance product called Enhanced Coverage Option (ECO) can also be added to crop insurance options for farmers in 2021. It provides additional area-based coverage for a portion of underlying crop insurance deductibles. ECO can be purchased regardless of your base acres being enrolled in ARC or PLC programs.

The Supplemental Coverage Option (SCO) is another option to provide extra coverage on a portion of your underlying crop insurance deductible. However, it can’t be purchased unless the base acres of the farm are enrolled in the PLC program.

Webinar Details:

Unsure what decision to make for your farm or ranch? We are here to help.

On Tuesday, February 23rd at 11 am CST, join SD Corn and Gary Schnitkey, a professor of farm management at University of Illinois for a webinar for our state’s farmers. He will explain the options you have under the 2018 farm bill and what you need to do before the March 15th decision deadline, as well as answer questions that farmers in South Dakota have about the program. Schnitkey states “the decision could be different this time as prices have changed substantially when the 2019 and 2020 decisions were made.”

Registration is required for the event and after you register you will receive a confirmation email containing the information you need on how to join the webinar.

Register here:


Looking for additional resources about the 2018 farm bill and your options for the 2021 crop season? The USDA has you covered. Here are some additional resources as you plan for your crops:

Program Definitions


Yield Update

ARC-PLC Library

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