House Ag Committee Chairman Mike Conaway Highlights the Next Farm Bill

A recent update by Jessica Domel, of the Texas Farm Bureau, included some interesting points that House Agriculture Committee Chairman Mike Conaway (R., Tex.) made regarding the next Farm Bill.

Specifically, yesterday’s update noted that, “[Chairman Conaway] already has his eyes set on 2018 and the potential a new farm bill may bring.

“With farm sector profitability forecast to be down for the fourth straight year, Conaway says it’s important, now more than ever, for farmers to have a working farm safety net.

“‘The three-year average drop right now is about 55 percent, which is the worst three-year average since before the depression,’ Conaway said. ‘It’s hard times, and quite frankly, no one that I’m talking to expects commodity prices to recover within the next couple of years. The USDA is not projecting a recovery of prices, so this could be an extended hard time for folks in production agriculture.'”

Ms. Domel explained that, “Seeing the struggles farmers, ranchers and dairymen face will make it difficult for naysayers to say farm safety net programs aren’t needed, [Conaway] said.

“‘We’re going to be working hard to get the farm bill done on time before it expires,’ Conaway said. ‘There’s no reason to go through the drama of short-term extensions or expirations. We’ll be making the rounds formally in 2017 asking farmers what’s working and what’s not working.'”

The Texas Farm Bureau update added that, “In 2018, he hopes to revisit cotton farmer support programs, whether that’s through cottonseed or lint.

‘Something has to happen there,’ Conaway said.”

For more background on issues associated with cotton and the Farm Bill, see this BartellPowell update from February, as well as this BartellPowell update from July.

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