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Honored Advisor

Non Farmers

Iowa's Grassley made this statement reported in SF......

 

Iowa Senator Chuck Grassley said the 2018 farm bill should end the “dishonest” practice of crop subsidy payments to non-farmers.

 

Leave it to a politician to rely on terms that he can redefine at will.

 

Got any idea what a "non-farmer" is ??

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6 Replies
Veteran Advisor

Re: Non Farmers

I only speak Minuhsotan - probably need Hobby or BA to translate Iowegian.

USDA says we're growers - does that mean non-farmers?

 

 

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Honored Advisor

Re: Non Farmers

I think they mean, rich people like Scottie Pippen or Paul MacCartney that own a farm and collect farm payments from the farm bill.  But you know those rich people aren`t the problem, it`s the 10,000 acre local yokel that wants to farm the world and uses the multiple entity loophole to collect payments big enough to buy a farm every year.  Meanwhile, a poor schmuck like me is lucky to buy groceries with his ARC payment.   But Ringo Starr or whoever, big whoop sent `em a check, it`s not like they want to farm the world.

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Veteran Advisor

Re: Non Farmers

How does a Scottie or a Paul collect payments if they are not farming?  Or at least renting out on shares?  To cut landowners out of payments will only disincentivise  share rents, and I don't think that is a good thing.

Honored Advisor

Re: Non Farmers

good point 58.  In our zeal to play the political social engineering game we loose sight of the details....

 

And it happens in reverse... you said  "To cut landowners out of payments will only disincentivise  share rents, and I don't think that is a good thing."  

That is the tip of a sizeable iceberg in the tug of war between large or small....

 

That big operator that draws BA's focus when prices are down and the other 3 days a year... is not the one that pushes production levels.  The principle is the same now as it was 50 years ago when there were 20 times as many operators on smaller farms.  Whether it is cash rent or crop share............. whether it is a farm retiree or someone sick of getting 2% return on his assets, property taxes are the only expense they worry about.  Even if they pay a share of fertilizer.... it is still disproportionately small compared to the operators position in risk to the market.......  They will complain about prices and chew on their "guy" when they get less than last year...... or the good year in 2013 they will never forget but just let that operator cut back on planted acres or change crops and see what will happen....

 

The issue between big and small has nothing to do with size comparisons between operators...  The bigger the less % of their income comes from usda.  And for that big operator, as his usda income is trimmed because of size what happens to the owners portion of his acres participation.... goes up.  the neighbors estate got split between heirs and they all stay eligible as the acres get rented out....... the number of rich beatles owning farmland and getting farm payments is non existent, we long ago took care of that long ago.  Some rich do own farm land, but could give a flip about subsidies they also just want to see the production....

 

I just think there is no usda action that is going to help producers....out of the overproduction issue anyway.  BA makes one point about crop insurance helping big operators than may be true in his need to hate bigger guys,,,, but in terms of production size is just a relationship to technology and farming practice improvements.  It is not changing production when the average size of producers rises and numbers of producers fall.

I tend to agree Clayton, that is the immediate effect....long term owners of ag land continue to be the reason producers cant participate in a functioning market.  The idea that land value inflation without a change of use should not be guaranteed.

 

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Honored Advisor

Re: Non Farmers

I don`t "hate big guys" though some are off in the head to want to farm the entire world, but they are only "playing the game".    What`s been going on so far is the "big guy" literally buys the same seed as the little guy for half the price.  It`s the little guy dumb enough to buy name brand seed at a piddly discount that subsidizes the big guy`s cheap seed, same with chemical and fertilizer.  The big guy then capitalizes those savings into unfathomably high rents.  

 

If there is a farm bill and Paul McCartney owns a dairy farm, if he meets the requirements, he should be able to sell subsidized milk like everyone else, even though he never set foot on the farm.  JMO

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Veteran Advisor

Re: Non Farmers

I was looking at it from the young and beginning farmers perspective. I'm neither young nor beginning but I work with some. One of the biggest obstacles to the young and beginning farmer is access to land. He cannot compete with the cash rent paid by established farmers or the BTO. So on a share rent the owner gets a share of government payments, but if we say they can't have their share, why wouldn't they just cash rent to the highest bidder. So then who gets the shaft? Exactly, the young guy who can't afford the high rents. So much for the idea of helping beginning farmers
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