January 29, 2020

Farm Bill; Biofuels; Climate Change- Political Notes; CFTC Issues; and Weather Impacts

Farm Bill

Reuters news reported yesterday (article posted at DTN, link requires subscription) that, “The U.S. Agriculture Department unveiled tighter eligibility rules for farm subsidies on Wednesday but a small-farm group said they do not live up to President Barack Obama’s call for reform.

“The rules, to take effect on Thursday, bar subsidies to the wealthiest Americans, as required by the 2008 farm law. There is no limit on how much money a producer can collect.”


Ag Policy Agenda – Climate Change Issues; Weather Concerns; Trade Developments; School Lunch Program; and Political Notes

Ag Policy Agenda – Climate Change Issues

DTN Ag Policy Editor Chris Clayton reported yesterday that, “Agriculture policy should focus on job creation in 2010, the chairman of the Senate Agriculture Committee explained to DTN in a December interview.

“Much of the policy focus for Congress will be to attempt to finish work started in 2009 while gauging just what is practical before November’s mid-term elections.

“Senate Agriculture Committee Chairman Blanche Lincoln, D-Ark., said her committee will work on green energy with the goal to ‘create jobs and put our economy back on the right track … We’re going to be looking towards focusing on creating jobs in rural communities. That will probably be a big issue for us.’”


Ag Economy – Farm Bill; Climate Change Issues; Animal Agriculture; and Political Notes

Ag Economy – Farm Bill

The “Washington Insider” section of DTN reported yesterday (link requires subscription) that, “There has been considerable discussion in the farm press recently about last year’s decline in major economic indicators. Last month, USDA’s most recent economic review documented what producers already know: the sector has been whipsawed by highly volatile domestic and international forces since mid-2008. These trends were initially favorable, the agency said, but then weaker domestic and international markets have undercut prices and returns for many, although not all commodities.

“The result, for 2009, is double-digit declines in crop and livestock cash receipts [related graph depicting value of production]. And, it has meant declines in average net cash income for farm businesses.”


Farm Bill – Ag Economy; and Climate Change Issues

Farm Bill- Ag Economy

The January 1 edition of The Kiplinger Agriculture Letter (link requires subscription) reported that, “Though USDA is still working to implement parts of the $300-billion-plus ’08 farm legislation, the agency and Congress are making early plans for its successor, coming in two or three years.

Capitol Hill hearings will start in March or so, giving lawmakers an idea of what farmers and other interests want in the way of policy changes, subsidies and funding for USDA’s array of programs.”


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