Payments spotlight Farm Bill commodity title weaknesses

A leading ag professor says the need for special farm payment programs – like MFP, CFAP and PPP – in the last few years might have exposed weaknesses to the farm bill’s commodity title program.

Gary Schnitkey with the University of Illinois was a panelist on a recent House Ag subcommittee hearing on the efficacy of the farm safety net led Chairwoman Cheri Bustos.

“These program payments perhaps signal needed changes to strengthen existing crop insurance programs such that additional ad hoc programs are less needed in the future.”

He says the higher commodity prices and more robust farm economy were not predicted a year ago.

“That just illustrates how situations can change abruptly in agriculture. The committee’s evaluation of the efficacy of the programs is timely as the safety net will continue to come into play in the future.”

Schnitkey says the hope is the worst of the trade disputes and COVID control measures are behind U.S. agriculture.

The committee is looking at 2018 farm bill programs in preparation for the 2023 Farm Bill.

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