On July 25, 2019, the USDA released details on the new $16 billion trade aid package for farmers, which is intended to offset losses producers have experienced as a result of President Donald Trump's ongoing trade dispute with China.
The package directs $14.5 billion in direct payments to farmers and will be distributed in three installments. For the first round, farmers will receive at least $15 an acre, or 50 percent of their total estimated payout—whichever is greater. The maximum payment rate will be $150 an acre. Additionally, $1.4 billion will be allocated towards commodity purchases; and another $100 million is being devoted to assist food and farm groups in developing new export markets. The department has said direct payments will be made to farmers at rates based on their county, rather than per commodity—a change from the 2018 trade-relief program.
The first installment will be sent out in mid to late August, with the next two payments following in November and January, if needed.