The Farm Bill was passed by the House of Representatives by a razor-thin margin 213-211. The $867 billion package renews the safety net for farmers across the country, but also includes tougher work requirements for recipients of the Supplemental Nutrition Program (SNAP), formerly known as food stamps.
“Our industry is tremendously grateful for House Agriculture Committee chairman Mike Conaway’s (R-TX) leadership in the development of this legislation and getting it to a successful vote in the House,” NCC chairman Ron Craft, a Plains, Texas, ginner, said.
He said the industry also appreciates the strong support from Agriculture Committee ranking member Collin Peterson (D-MN) and the many Cotton Belt representatives in helping to get this farm legislation through the House without damaging amendments such as those that would compromise crop insurance and impose stricter payment limits and eligibility provisions.
“Without strong commodity and crop insurance policies underpinning US agriculture,” Craft stated, “lenders would be reluctant to provide financing to an industry operating at the mercy of weather extremes and volatile global market prices.”
Craft said the farm bill not only can help cotton producers obtain the financing necessary for capital investments and annual crop production but can support a healthy and thriving rural economy that includes cotton gins, warehouses, marketing coops and merchants to market the crop, cottonseed handlers, and textile manufacturers—and the businesses that support them.
“The NCC is continuing to work with the Senate to reverse the harmful changes made to cotton policy during last week’s Senate Agriculture Committee consideration of its farm bill, the Agriculture Improvement Act of 2018,” Craft said.
The full Senate is expected to consider farm bill in the week of June 25. (RKS)
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