February 28, 2020

Farm Bill; Biofuels; Food Security; and Climate Issues

Farm Bill

Philip Brasher reported yesterday at the Green Fields Blog (Des Moines Register) that, “Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack vigorously defended federal farm subsidies today, saying they’ve enabled American’s to have relatively cheap food, a claim strongly disputed by economists.

“Even though prices for most subsidized crops are soaring this year, Vilsack said farmers still need subsidy program to protect them from future drops in prices.

“‘Who benefits ultimately for all of this? I would argue that it’s not the 250,000 to 270,000 farmers who benefit from this structure. It is actually the rest of us that benefit,’ Vilsack said in a meeting with the Register editorial board. He said Americans have more disposable income than people in the rest of the world because U.S. consumers spend just 10 to 15 percent of their earnings on food.”