YOUR TEXAS AGRICULTURE MINUTE
A safety net in tatters
As farmers—especially cotton farmers—face an economic crisis, it’s clear Congress left agriculture without a farm bill safety net. Many may not be able to plant this season.
The 2014 Farm Bill has fallen short. About all that’s left of it is crop insurance, a limited option for keeping farmers on the land. Many far right legislators would like to take away even that. The left has done little to protect agriculture from a crushing and costly regulatory burden. Farmers are in a fix with prices below their costs.
Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack said no to treating cottonseed like the food crop it is, cutting off that potential help. Most in agriculture believe he can do this, if he will. Vilsack instead asked Congress for a Cotton Assistance Transition Program. This would at least provide money to help market crops.
The farm bill is not working. But opening it again is a target for more reckless cutting. Not good for agriculture. Not good for America.
The preceding commentary is brought to you by Texas Farm Bureau, the “Voice of Texas Agriculture.” Called “Your Texas Agriculture Minute,” TFB will issue thought-provoking editorials each week—via print and audio—to spark understanding of agriculture in the Lone Star State and its impact on each and every Texan.
You may read this week’s editorial above or listen to the audio version.
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