What's the Farm Bill?
Do you know what the Farm Bill is? Here's some information written by the Congressional Research Service (a public policy research institute of Congress) to help explain it.
The farm bill is an omnibus, multiyear law that governs an array of agricultural and food programs. It provides an opportunity for policymakers to comprehensively and periodically address agricultural and food issues. In addition to developing and enacting farm legislation, Congress is involved in overseeing its implementation. The farm bill typically is renewed about every five years. Since the 1930s, Congress has enacted 18 farm bills.
Farm bills traditionally have focused on farm commodity program support for a handful of staple commodities— corn, soybeans, wheat, cotton, rice, peanuts, dairy, and sugar. Farm bills have become increasingly expansive in nature since 1973, when a nutrition title was first included. Other prominent additions since then include horticulture and bioenergy titles and expansion of conservation, research, and rural development titles.
Without reauthorization, some farm bill programs would expire, such as the nutrition assistance and farm commodity support programs. Other programs have permanent authority and do not need reauthorization (e.g., crop insurance) and are included in a farm bill to make policy changes or achieve budgetary goals. The farm bill extends authorizations of discretionary programs. The farm bill also suspends long-abandoned permanent laws for certain farm commodity programs from the 1940s that used supply controls and price regimes that would be costly if restored.
Read the rest of the article as a pdf below.
The article, The Farm Bill is a big deal if you produce, or eat, food... explains why we should all care what is finalized in this bill.