USDA Secretary Vilsack issued a disaster declaration for Christian, Hancock, McDonough, Sangamon and Washington counties due to losses from storms which hit the area last June.
The Illinois Department of Agriculture encourages agricultural producers impacted by the storms to contact the local USDA Service Center to confirm eligibility.
A natural disaster designation allows the USDA Farm Service Agency to provide emergency loans to producers recovering from natural disasters.
Eligible farmers have eight months from the date of the disaster declaration to apply for emergency loans.
Producers in counties contiguous to the disaster area are also eligible for federal aid.