Commodity, Crop Insurance & Credit Programs

Conservation Compliance is a Key Thread in Farm Safety Net

August 2, 2017

In order to be eligible for most federal farm programs, including the taxpayer subsidized federal crop insurance program, farmers whose land includes highly erodible areas or wetlands must adhere to specific conservation requirements. These requirements, known collectively as conservation compliance, are in place to ensure that our shared natural resources have a minimum level of […]

Senate Agriculture Committee Tackles Farm Bill Heavy Hitters: Commodities, Credit, and Crop Insurance

July 26, 2017

Yesterday, Senate Agriculture Committee hunkered down for an epic farm bill hearing, during which 17 witnesses gave testimony on three of the bill’s most significant titles – the Commodity Title (Title I), Credit Title (Title V), and Risk Management Title (Title XI). Witnesses at the hearing included representatives from commodity groups, banks, general farm organizations, […]

Senate Appropriators Prioritize Sustainable Agriculture and Rural Development

July 21, 2017

Following closely on the heels of the House Agriculture Appropriation Subcommittee’s funding bill, which was approved by the full House Appropriations Committee last week, the Senate Appropriations Committee has advanced its agriculture appropriations funding measure for fiscal year (FY) 2018. The Senate bill moved quickly through the Subcommittee and full Committee approval process, with just […]

House Makes Improvements, but Agriculture Appropriations Bill Still a Work in Progress

July 13, 2017

On July 12, 2017, the House Appropriations Committee advanced their agriculture appropriations funding measure for fiscal year (FY) 2018, which was drafted originally by the House Agriculture Appropriations Subcommittee. This appropriations bill funds the major programs and functions of the US Department of Agriculture (USDA), the Commodity Future Trading Commission (CFTC), and the Food and […]

The Numbers Behind the Farm Bill: the Commodity and Conservation Titles

July 13, 2017

Editor’s Note: This is the second of a four-part series explaining the background budget information that will be used to craft the upcoming 2018 Farm Bill. In this post we look in more detail at the commodity and conservation titles of the farm bill. In part three will focus on programs that will need to have […]

The Numbers Behind the Farm Bill: What the New CBO Baseline Means for the 2018 Farm Bill

July 11, 2017

Editor’s Note: This is the first of a four-part series of blog examining the funding outlook for the 2018 Farm Bill. In an effort to simplify the complex subject of farm bill funding, we will present these blogs in FAQ format. Part two of this series will answer questions related to agricultural spending in the […]

House Appropriations Bill Largely Rejects President’s Proposed Cuts to Agriculture Programs

June 29, 2017

“Dead on arrival” is what many in Congress called the President’s fiscal year (FY) 2018 budget request – which included a discretionary funding cut of 21 percent ($47 billion over 10 years) to the US Department of Agriculture (USDA) – when it was released earlier this year. This week’s FY 2018 funding bill from the House […]

Disaster Assistance: from “Not a Penny” to New and Improved

June 6, 2017

Last week, the US Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) Economic Research Service (ERS) released a new report indicating that changes to the Noninsured Crop Disaster Assistance Program (NAP) made in the 2014 Farm Bill have been well-received by farmers and have led to a doubling of NAP applications – from 66,000 in 2014 to 138,000 in 2015. While this is […]

New Opportunity to Influence Farm Policy at the Local Level

May 31, 2017

The power to make decisions about agricultural policies and programs lies not only with Congress and U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) officials, but also in the hands of farmers, ranchers, and rural community members across the country. Stakeholders interested in being involved in federal decision making without taking a trip to Washington D.C., should explore the […]

Trump’s Proposed Budget Cuts Would Spell Disaster for Rural America

May 24, 2017

The outcry from farmers, farm and food groups, and Members of Congress came swiftly this week following the release of President Trump’s fiscal year (FY) 2018 budget proposal. The nation got its initial preview of the Administration’s priorities this March in an outline budget document termed “the skinny budget”. This week the full proposal, which […]


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