Anyone else out there denied MFP (Market Facilitation Program) payments? According to USDA officials, the “Trump Bump” payments were designed to go to all soybean farmers regardless of participation in other FSA programs. I found out the hard way this is not true. The MFP program money was distributed via CCC payments. Through language in the 1985 Food security Act, CCC payments are tied to a FSA/NRCS farm conservation plan. There is no way to get this “plan” for 2018 unless you had been playing ball with them all along.

Is this kind of thing happening to farmers and ranchers affected by floods and bomb cyclones, their immediate needs being much greater than mine? Socialism has marched too far into agriculture when you realize how much power we have given the USDA to decide who will succeed and who will fail.

We need to repeal or replace the ’85 Food Security Act for a start, the ad-hoc type taxpayer help programs I’ve mentioned should not be tied to USDA/FSA/NRCS bureaucratic farm plans. Eventually this kind of big deficit spending/big government stuff needs to be replaced with self-help tax plans.

While Mother Nature attempts her own supply control with a late, cold/wet spring, markets continue down, a reflection of our oversupply. USDA programs are designed to oversupply, but this is killing our farms. We all like our crop insurance individually, but collectively this subsidized industry is keeping millions of marginal acres in production. Also, environmental problems are mounting with all this overproduction. My bill for corn crop removal P-K-S was $60/acre — that is the fertilizer industry telling us to use less.

Therefore, two ideas for supply control without traditional USDA supply controls are:

  • unsubsidize crop insurance so that privates will make rates reflect risk and chase marginal acres back to traditional land use.
  • industry-wide(turf included), put a maximum use rate on nitrogen and phosphorus (140-N and 70-P2O5) just like we did w with atrazine (call it self-regulation) and recognize the solution to pollution is dilution, not bureaucrats and taxes.

I farm to make a living, not to feed the world. The USDA’s oversupply scheme is messing with that living.

Dave Savage

Lamoni, Iowa

Sign up for our weekly CropWatch newsletter

* I understand and agree that registration on or use of this site constitutes agreement to its user agreement and privacy policy.