AFBF recently commended the Agriculture Department’s Farm Service Agency for listening to concerns and taking action to make an important adjustment to the Ag Risk Coverage provisions of the farm bill. The new farm bill provided farmers with options to tailor their safety net/risk management approach. The county average ARC option, however, initially contained a provision that required the “average” on which a farmer’s benefits were calculated to be based on the county in which he or she signed up for the program. For farmers whose operations are within a single county, this was not a concern. However, for many farmers that operate in multiple counties, it was discovered that in several cases, farmers were effectively losing benefits because the calculation relied on a single county average.
AFBF and several other commodity and farm groups have been discussing the issue with FSA since late last winter.