Peterson suggests doing away with ARC program

The Ranking Member of the House Agriculture Committee says if he were in charge of writing the next Farm Bill, he would push for an overhaul of the crop commodity title one programs.

Minnesota Congressman Collin Peterson tells Brownfield the Agriculture Risk Coverage (ARC) program used by most corn and soybean farmers won’t be sufficient in the event of an average or below-average crop.

“But in this climate, the best we’re probably able to do is just keep what we got.  But I don’t think it’s going to be adequate.  I think we should put more money into the Farm Bill.  In my view, I think we should get rid of the ARC program.  We should have PLC (and) raise the floor (to) $4 dollars for corn (and) $10.50 for soybeans and just have PLC.”

Peterson would also like future commodity programs to reflect planted acres instead of base acres, which are used to calculate ARC and PLC payments.

“This ARC program came about because of Iowa not getting crop insurance payments because they always have shallow losses, but never enough to trigger the crop insurance.  So those guys were getting $20 dollars direct payments before the change.  They got $120 dollars ARC payments in the years they made a lot of money.”

He says now that prices are lower, many of those farmers won’t receive payments because of how the commodity programs are structured.

Brownfield interviewed Peterson following a Farm Bill listening session in west-central Minnesota last week.






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