Record yields across the U.S. and favorable conditions around the world this harvest season have brought the lowest price of wheat in nearly a decade, with wheat futures down, causing a dilemma for elevator operators as an oversupply of wheat has caused over-capacity in some areas. Affecting everyone from farmers to agriculture suppliers, these depressed prices are contributing to a general downward spiral of the farm economy, exacerbated by the threat of cut to certain programs in the Farm Bill, such as crop insurance and Title 1 programs, which protect farmers in times like this. With stagnant markets, many producers aren’t able to cover their cost of production.
Rural communities and farmers’ livelihood are both in danger if this downward trend continues, which makes it ever more important that a functional and successful Farm Bill is developed and implemented in 2018. To achieve this goal, NAWG has developed and launched a Farm Bill Survey, intended to gather feedback from growers about what policies are most important to them. With the threat of continued low prices, it is increasingly important that growers’ priorities are heard and listened to as NAWG works towards an effective Farm Bill which will improve farm safety net programs, as well as maintain the already successful programs.
As a grassroots, membership-based organization, NAWG relies on input from wheat growers to proactively address wheat growers’ needs and translate these needs into a Farm Bill which will protect growers. The Farm Bill Survey asks farmers to describe their experiences with their crop insurance coverage, Title 1 programs like ARC and PLC, and Title 2 conservation programs. The planning and implementation of a functional 2018 Farm Bill depends on the active and insightful input from wheat growers, to clarify the successes and miss-steps from previous Farm Bills, improve programs that are not as effective as they could be, and maintain and improve the programs that benefit wheat growers.
NAWG encourages wheat growers to complete the NAWG Farm Bill Survey and contribute their voices to the planning of a successful Farm Bill. The Survey can be found on the NAWG website.