What is in this article?:
- Obama budget proposal targets direct payments
- Reform agricultural subsidies
• With congressional leaders and some commodity organizations already backing away from them, the budget proposal announcement by President Obama may have sounded the death knell for the guaranteed annual payments for cotton and grain producers.
Reform agricultural subsidies
The president, speaking at a White House ceremony, said his proposal would “reform agricultural subsidies — subsidies that a lot of times pay large farms for crops they don’t grow.”
The White House said in its background paper on farm spending that more than 50 percent of the direct payments go to farmers with more than $100,000 in income. Farmers in Iowa received $473 million in direct payments in 2010, the most of any state.
In recent weeks, organizations like the National Cotton Council, have been lobbying for new farm programs based more on “an affordable, revenue-based crop insurance program than on traditional farm payments.
Citing passage of the Budget Control Act in August, the NCC said “it is clear that future deficit reduction efforts will place unprecedented pressure on the existing structure (of farm program payments).”
For more on the NCC’s farm policy position, see http://southeastfarmpress.com/government/ncc-advocates-change-course-farm-policy.
The National Corn Growers Association, meanwhile, has unveiled a new Agriculture Disaster Assistance Program that it says would modify and replace the existing Average Crop Revenue Election or ACRE program that has drawn a mixed response in different parts of the country.
“Responding to a charge by our voting delegates to investigate transitioning direct payments into programs that allow producers the ability to mitigate risk, our grower-led Public Policy Action Team developed a crop-specific, revenue-based risk management tool that provides a safety net when growers are facing a loss,” said NCGA President Bart Schott. “We are focusing on simplification and faster delivery of assistance when it is needed.”
For additional information on the corn growers proposal, see http://southeastfarmpress.com/grains/corn-growers-introduce-adap-proposal-2012-farm-bill.