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SD Gov. Noem Stresses Importance of a Farm Bill

As lawmakers struggle to come to terms on a new farm bill, a farm state governor drove home the importance of one at a recent House Ag hearing. South Dakota Governor, farmer, and former Ag Committee member Kristi Noem was passionate in her call for a new farm bill as not just a safety net for farmers, but for the nation’s food supply.

Noem said, “America decided years ago that we need to have a farm bill to ensure that every family in this country had a safe, and had an affordable food supply, that they had the ability to go to a grocery store to put food on the table for their families. And that if a farmer had a good year, he could pay his bills, but if he had a bad year, he could lose everything.”

The Republican Noem stressed a farm bill should be bipartisan but argued it wouldn’t work without boosting subsidy triggers or reference prices. an issue that’s divided the two parties over funding. “If you don’t address the increase in reference prices and bring them up to where they should be, there is no safety net,” according to Noem.

That’s a big key, Noem argues, to keep farmers on the land.

Noem said, “They’re some of the biggest gamblers in the world that I know because they bury millions of dollars in the dirt and they’re taking a chance because they really, truly do believe that producing food is a world need, and it’s a need that America needs to have, so at least give them a safety net.”

Noem concluded that having a viable farm safety net is crucial to getting producers through bad years and enabling America to feed itself instead of depending on others to feed it.

Story provided by NAFB News Service and Matt Kaye/Berns Bureau Washington

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