Flea Market Farm Bill or Firth? | | Food Party! | | Laura Steck


Laura Steck

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About this blog: For many years I have been drawn to food for good and bad reasons. From my eating disorder to culinary school on the East Coast, food has been my passion, my profession and my nemesis. I’m a sugar addict, a 17 year vegetarian, and a food and en… (more)

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The 9 most terrifying words in English are I’m from the Government and I’m here to help.

Ronald Reagan resonated with this now-famous quote. Self-reliance is a highly valued trait throughout the United States, especially the Hartland farming nation.

or is it? Anyone involved in modern farming knows that the statements are almost all hats, not cows. “Imhof said, food fight. “Conventional farmers survive by farming systems rather than growing what is best suited for a particular piece of land or providing a more balanced and healthier diet.”

The origins of the Farm Bill began in the 1930s as a temporary solution to free millions of Americans from the economic and environmental effects of the Great Depression and the Dust Bowl (page 37). Billions of dollars a year in taxes have artificially propped up agricultural systems for decades. Created as an important safety net in a bad year, subsidiesThey include absentee landlords, tractor dealers serving farmers, insurance companies, and corporate agribusinesses buying subsidized crops, grain distributors, animal feed businesses, and ethanol producers. ” (page 21)

– Photo by Diane Choplin

Either way, many Americans appreciate it because it makes food cheaper. (Compared to other developed nations, Americans spend a smaller percentage of their income on food.) But Imhoff says that even though the grocery bill is small, a loaf of bread or a pound of ground beef is enough. , and other commodity-based foods will pay three times.

1. At the cash register
2. Taxes that subsidize the commodity crops that make up our purchases
3. Environmental cleanup and medical expenses related to resource-based agriculture

This drives me crazier than a wet hen.

– Photo by Diane Choplin

Unfortunately, “3 out of 5 U.S. farmers don’t get paid at all, but the top 5% of subsidy recipients (often producer cooperatives, Indian tribes, and large corporations) Received an average of about $710,150 annually (between 1995 and 2010) (pg. 25) Family farms are often left out of the process Fruits and vegetables – mostly forgotten .

In addition to the commodities program, the latest 2018 bill has 11 titles or areas of focus (see chart below). Next week, we’ll take a closer look at the biggest part of the bill: the nutrition title.

– Dan Imhoff from Foodfight (pg. 29)

Currently, and every five years, the approval process funds each title as either mandatory (must be funded) or optional (may be funded). , hold the horse. Imhoff reports that the only untouchable spending category is commodity price support. (Major US products: Wheat, corn, sorghum, barley, oats, cotton, rice, soybeans/other oilseeds, certain legumes, peanuts, sugar, honey, wool, mohair.)

– Photo by Diane Choplin

So while funds are allocated in the approval process (Phase 1), their fate really depends on the annual appropriations process (Phase 2) conducted by the Agriculture Appropriations Subcommittee of the Senate and House Appropriations Committees. (32 pages)

Bless their hearts… if they want to see the money promised for the title, supporters will have to come back every year and do the food fight all over again.

– Photo 5o by Christine Krieg

Food parties! We’re reading Food Fight by Dan Imhoff, our guide to the next farm bill. This is my second post. Please pick up the book and read it together. Follow the discussion here:

1. Farmville. not sexywhat really matters

2. Flea Market Farm Building or Firth?

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