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Boozman: We’ve Got to Get the Farm Bill Right

John Boozman, the ranking Republican on the Senate Agriculture Committee says its important to get the Farm Bill right for farmers and ranchers.

The Arkansas Republican commented on the Farm Bill during an interview on the Wednesday episode of Agriculture of America. Boozman says he isn’t concerned over the Farm Bill not being listed as a priority by the Senate Leader, Chuck Schumer.

Boozman says, “Well, I’m not so worried about Senator Schumer not listening. It’s a lot of money, it’s part farm and so lot nutrition. And this is a five year program, and so to commit our farmers, not just one year, but a five year contract, because we take this very seriously in Congress. Once we set this, than it is a contract with our farmers, we don’t allow other entities like Transportation to steal the money and this and that. And again, you know, it’s it is a contract, so we’ve got to get it right.”

With so many economic changes since the last Farm Bill, Boozman says risk management is key. Boozman says, “The Farm Bill to me, the first thing you got to get in order, in place, is making sure that the risk management tools are there so that our farmers can go the bank, borrow the money that they need, and know that they’re taking huge risks, but at least there is a bottom to that risk, and that’s through crop insurance, ARC, PLC, programs like that.”

That’s one of the top issues farmers bring up in listening sessions. Boozman says, “Certainly risk management, crop insurance, increasing reference prices, things like that are right at the top. But also trade, trade is the lifeblood of agriculture. Last year, we had essentially the first time in 50 years, we had a trade imbalance in agriculture. That’s always the bright star. So, we need to do a much better job with trade. These countries are begging us, nobody wants to put all their eggs in the China basket anymore, and so, there’s a lot of opportunities, but to be honest the administration simply not following through.”

You can hear the full conversation with AOA host Jesse Allen during the first half of Wednesday’s program below:

Special thanks to NAFB News Service Editor Micheal Clements for contributing to this article

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