America’s two largest farm groups are delivering a loud message to farm bill negotiators: ‘Don’t get hung up on differences, deliver a farm bill before current law expires, September 30th. With the lowest farm income in 12-years and a tariff war depleting U.S. market share overseas, American Farm Bureau Federation (AFBF), National Farmers Union NFU) and more than 150 other groups have sent negotiators an urgent message: ‘Don’t fail farmers.’ Here is AFBF’s Andrew Walmsley.
Walmsley downplays concerns, but election-year politics, and the president’s push, short of a veto-threat, to reform food stamp requirements, are not far from anyone’s mind.
Walmsley says differences covering some five-titles have already been worked out, but big issues remain.
Farm Bureau President Zippy Duvall said farmers and their bankers can’t wait much longer—they need farm bill certainty, not delay. He said lender surveys and AFBF’s experience show spring could bring “a wave of farm closures,” unless there’s major marketplace improvement.
Walmsley concludes: “It’s more important than ever that Congress get the job done.”