Producers seek strengthened farm bill commodity programs

Ag industry leaders are asking Congress to protect the safety net in the 2023 Farm Bill.

Testifying during a Senate Ag subcommittee hearing Tuesday morning, American Farm Bureau Federation President Zippy Duvall said producers don’t want any cuts to crop insurance.

“The first thing you hear about is we got to make sure crop insurance stays intact,” Duvall said. “And, we need to broaden it for those specialty crops that don’t have the opportunity to use it.”

National Farmers Union President Rob Larew says commodity programs must be strengthened as conditions change throughout the industry.

“Whether it’s the reference prices in there or other triggers that reflect today’s circumstance, we need to make sure that’s accommodated as well,” Larew said.

Senate Ag Committee Chair Debbie Stabenow, a democratic senator from Michigan, says producer feedback on farm bill programs is critical.

“We got 240 people, most in the House as we know, that have never written a farm bill and never voted on a farm bill,” Stabenow said. “They don’t understand what this means to rural America.”

Stabenow says she’s asked the Budget Committee for spending flexibility to help address the needs of farmers and ranchers.

The hearing was held by the Senate Ag Subcommittee on Commodities, Risk Management, and Trade.

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