The American Soybean Association (ASA) Board of Directors has voted to endorse House Agriculture Committee Chairman Collin Peterson’s (D-Minn.) farm bill proposal that was released recently.

ASA’s board met in Washington, D.C., and reviewed the Peterson proposal prior to making visits with members of Congress.

ASA is urging Congress to support the Peterson proposal.

Newly confirmed ASA President John Hoffman, a soybean farmer from Waterloo, Iowa, said that "Chairman Peterson’s proposal helps correct the inequities from the 2002 farm bill that established target prices at levels that do not provide an adequate safety net for producers of oilseed crops. His 2007 proposal, which includes a soybean target price of $6.10, is a step in the right direction toward rebalancing the support provided to oilseeds in relation to other program commodities."

ASA’s top policy priority is to improve the safety net for soybean producers. ASA’s farm bill proposals call for a soybean target price of $6.85. Close behind that is funding for a biodiesel incentive program, which is included in Chairman Peterson’s proposal, and authorization of a healthy oils incentive to help commercialize new specialty soybeans with improved compositional traits.

"The Chairman’s proposal represents a fair balance between farm commodity, conservation, energy, nutrition and rural development programs," Hoffman said. "It reflects and advances ASA’s interest in improving the safety net for U.S. soybean producers."

U.S. soybean farmers have supported the ‘three-legged stool,’ which includes the marketing loan, the counter-cyclical program, and direct payments, combined with crop insurance and disaster assistance, that can provide an adequate safety net for farmers in years of low prices and reduced production.

The next few weeks are key to farm bill debate, and the ASA will continue to communicate soybean growers’ interests to Congress. For additional details, access ASA’s 2007 farm bill proposals at www.SoyGrowers.com/policy/2007FarmBill/ASA2007FB.PDF.

ASA is the policy advocate and collective voice of its 24,000 producer-members on domestic and international issues of importance to all U.S. soybean farmers.