Since the Senate began the floor consideration process, over 200 amendments to the 2012 Farm Bill have been filed. This legislation, officially known as the Agriculture Reform, Food and Jobs Act of 2012 (S. 3240), authorizes most nutrition assistance, conservation, and agricultural programs for the next five years. The current farm bill expires Sept. 30.
Land O'Lakes supports the passage of a farm bill that assures a reasonably-priced, stable food supply for consumers through the creation of a strong safety net for family farmers. This farm bill should preserve adequate farmer risk management tools, promote fairly-regulated conservation programs for voluntary participants, and maintain food security for domestic and foreign consumers while reducing costs for tax payers.
In order to pass the best possible bill, Land O'Lakes is monitoring the amendment process together with cooperative and agriculture industry allies such as the National Council of Farmer Cooperatives, National Milk Producers Federation, CropLife America, Grocery Manufacturing Association, and the Agricultural Retailers Association.
Current amendments supported include:
- Additions from either Sen. Johanns (NE) or Sens. Hagan (NC) and Crapo (ID) to exempt farmers from applying for National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System permits for approved pesticide applications
Current amendments opposed include:
- Two versions from Sen. DeMint (SC) that eliminate all or several vital dairy programs, leaving farmers at the mercy of unavoidable volatile market conditions
- Another from Sen. DeMint that endangers agricultural research and promotion by ending all mandatory check off programs
- A costly amendment from Sens. Sanders (VT) and Boxer (CA) that allows states to require genetically modified organism labeling and requires the USDA and FDA to track and report their sales
- A reduction in Market Access Program funding from Sen. Coburn (OK) that hinders export market growth
As additional amendments arise, Land O’Lakes will be sending action alerts notifying members of the cooperative’s formal position. To opt-in for these alerts, e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.