Senators discuss cost of 2023 Farm Bill

A pair of Republican Senators say the cost of the next farm bill is a major sticking point as lawmakers try and balance the needs of US farmers.

Roger Marshall of Kansas tells Brownfield high input costs and weather challenges could lead to an increase in reference prices.

“But certainly with commodity prices increasing, you would think that there would be reflection in the reference price,” Marshall said, “But, the question for me is, how would we pay for it?”

Marshall says conversation practices and new programs like carbon markets may need additional oversight while investing in additional nutrition programs.

Iowa’s Chuck Grassley says he’d like to see a cap placed on farm bill programs.

“So that we accomplish two things,” Grassley said, “we save the taxpayers a lot of money and secondly we direct the farm bill protection to small and medium-sized farmers.”

He says this would limit the amount of money that large farms could receive from the federal government.

“Some farmers, small and medium-sized, need the safety net,” Grassley said. “But when you get to farming 10,000-to-20,000 acres of land, you have the ability to get yourself over a lot of things that other farmers can’t.”

The current farm bill expires in September.

Brownfield’s Kellan Heavican contributed to this story.

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