Tobacco producers and quota holders are urged to sign up for the Tobacco Transition Payment Program, also known as the Tobacco Buyout, before June 17.

The TTPP makes payments to tobacco quota holders and producers beginning in 2005 and ending in 2014 to help with the transition to the free marketplace. Eligible tobacco quota holders will receive $7 per pound based on their basic quota at the 2003 marketing year level.

Producers of quota tobacco will receive up to $3 per pound based on their share of the risk in the 2002-04 crops of quota tobacco. TTPP payments will be made between June and September for Fiscal Year 2005. Subsequent payments in future years will be issued annually during the month of January.

For information, go to www.fsa.usda.gov/tobacco or call 1-866-887-0140.

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