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The U.S. Department of Agriculture Ford County service center has continued to be open for business through phone appointments and appropriate social distancing in needed field work.


According to USDA Ford County Farm Service Agency program technician Mary Townley, the Ford County Farm Service Agency office has been in limited service since March 23 because of COVID-19.


"While our program delivery staff will continue to come into the office, they will be working with our producers by phone, and using online tools whenever possible," the USDA said in a news release. "USDA Service Centers are encouraging visitors to take precautionary measures to help prevent the spread of coronavirus.


"All Service Center visitors wishing to conduct business with the Farm Service Agency, Natural Resources Conservation Service, or any other Service Center agency are required to call to schedule a phone appointment."


According to Townley, in addition to the contact methods described in the news release, producers are encouraged to subscribe to text message alerts.


"The alert feature provides an additional way to ensure that critical, time-sensitive updates reach producers wherever they may be," Townley said.


Text KSFord to FSANOW (372669) to opt-in to text message alerts. Users can stop the messages at any time, by texting STOP to FSANOW.


"Producers can expect to receive no more than two text messages per month, with information and updates from FSA," Townley said.


Producers can contact their local service center by phone for program or loan services needed.


For more information on Service Center operations, visit farmers.gov/coronavirus.


To contact the Ford County FSA, call 620-227-3731, Ext. 2.


To contact the Ford County Natural Resources Conservation Service, call 620-227-3731, Ext. 3.


To contact the writer, email vmarshall@dodgeglobe.com.