DTN Ag Policy Editor Chris Clayton reported on this development yesterday and noted that,
“USDA has not posted a handbook on ACRE on its website or sent handbooks to county offices yet. Handbooks provide details on how USDA will interpret rules in certain instances. Nor has USDA released details on how it will establish production history for farmers who do not have five years of certified history from which to figure an Olympic average. Farmers who have learned about the program’s requirements have expressed concern about what FSA will accept as verifiable yield records.”However, I'd note FSA does have a notice out on establishing yields for pulse crops. Skimming it, it looks to be very similar to the rules FSA used back in 1981 (?) to establish oat yields, when oats was added to the feed grain program, and the rules used in subsequent years every time a new/changed program required establishing yields for a crop.
FSA doesn't have a great record in putting handbooks out timely--back in the 1960's county employees were complaining bitterly about having to operate from a bunch of notices, rather than one handbook. So I'd advise Mr. Clayton to keep watch on the notices on the FSA website.