Farm Bill; Animal Ag; World Hunger; Food Safety; Biofuels; 1099 Issue; Climate Policy; and Corn Sugar
Farm Bill Issues
The Washington Insider section of DTN indicated yesterday (link requires subscription) that, “The Iowa Farm Bureau made headlines recently when it voted to recommend ending fixed direct payments. These ‘transition payments’ were a component of the Republican Contract with America’s Freedom to Farm initiative in 1996 — and were included to gain support for ending hold-over supply control programs that producers had come to hate. Even when prices weakened later on and the producer safety net was re-strengthened, the fixed payments were continued in the 2002 and 2008 bills.
“At the time they were first implemented, the payments were considered something of an advance by supporters of the World Trade Organization’s Doha Round negotiations because they were decoupled from production and prices. However, as the ‘transition’ payments have became to be seen as a fixture, they have become much more controversial, for several reasons.
“They are expensive, for one thing, at around $5 billion year annually.”