Senior Research Fellow in Agricultural Policy, Heritage Foundation
Every five years or so, Congress passes a farm bill that includes a wide range of programs. The next farm bill is looming and could very well pass in early 2018. A key aspect of the farm bill is the $15 billion a year “safety net” for farmers. While many people would reasonably assume that farmers are provided taxpayer assistance only when they suffer crop losses, the reality is far different. The safety net is a complicated web of market distorting programs and handouts that are primarily designed to help the largest agricultural producers manage the same normal business risks that a mom and pop shop has to address on a daily basis. This presentation will dispel the myths and make the case why all Americans, not just farmers, should want Congress to make major reforms to one of the most anti-market and pro-crony systems in the country.