How Will Election Results Impact Agriculture?

The word "agriculture" was seldom mentioned in the political campaigns that just ended, but no area of public life may be more affected by the results.

With the Republicans taking control of the House, Oklahoma Representative Frank Lucas is expected to take over as chairman of the House Agriculture Committee. Lucas has been a supporter to direct payments, which are expected to become a major issue as the debate intensifies over the 2012 Farm Bill. At the same time, there will likely be a lot of pressure on Lucas and other Republicans to follow through on their promises of cutting federal spending. That combination should make for some very interesting debate over farm programs in the coming months.

The farm program assures a minimum price for grains, cotton and oilseeds, with the USDA making up the difference between market prices and the support price. If returns are below targets set by law, it automatically makes additional payments.

In addition, the Republican House Committee will almost certainly take whacks at the EPA, an agency Republicans usually have at the end of their gun sights because of its restrictions on agribusiness.

The faces on the House panel will also change considerably, as several Democrat members were defeated. The losers included Jim Marshall of Georgia, Steve Kagen of Wisconsin, Earl Pomeroy of North Dakota, Travis Childers of Mississippi, Deborah Halvorson of Illinois, Kathleen Dahlkemper of Pennsylvania, Bobby Bright of Alabama, John Boccieri of Ohio, Stephanie Herseth-Sandlin of South Dakota and Frank Kratovil of Maryland.

On the Senate side, Blanche Lincoln’s defeat in Arkansas means there will be a new chairman of the Senate Agriculture Committee. Her likely Democratic successor at this point is thought to be Senator Debbie Stabenow of Michigan. Sources close to the panel says Stabenow is well-liked by her colleagues and earned their respect during the last round of farm bill negotiations by bridging the interests of states with commodity crops and those with specialty fruit and vegetables.

The five-year farm bill comes up for renewal in 2012 and the new version could look much different. As part of a compromise in the 2008 farm bill, many programs are scheduled to expire in 2012, including all research and crop production for cellulosic ethanol and advanced biofuels.

The battle over changes in agricultural programs may begin as early as the lame duck session, during which Congress must decide whether to extend a 45-cent-a-gallon tax credit for ethanol blenders. Cutting the subsidy would directly affect big ethanol producers such as Archer Daniels Midland.

Unless extended, the tax credit for ethanol blenders, a 54-cent a gallon tariff on imported ethanol and a 10-cent-a-gallon small-producer tax credit all expire Dec. 31.

(Sources: BrownfieldAgnews.com, Agriculture Industry Today)

Leave a Reply

Latest News
Crop InputsBayer Contests EPA’s Decision On Valuable Insecticide F…
February 5, 2016
Crop Science, a division of Bayer, has announced it has refused a request by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to Read More
Wheat Field North Dakota
Seed/BiotechSyngenta Wins Seed Fraud Suit Against South Dakota Grow…
February 5, 2016
Syngenta has obtained a $25,000 settlement from Paul and John Mayclin, Mayclin Farms, Plankinton, SD, in response to their Plant Read More
ManagementOABA Annual Conference Wraps Up In Columbus
February 5, 2016
More than 300 Ohio AgriBusiness Association (OABA) members and industry professionals were on hand to engage in collaborative learning and Read More
Crop InputsBayer To Contest EPA Flubendiamide Decision
February 5, 2016
Crop Science, a division of Bayer, announced today it has refused a request by EPA to voluntarily cancel the uses Read More
Syngenta
Seed/BiotechNot So Fast: ChemChina Syngenta Takeover Could Draw Nat…
February 5, 2016
State-owned China National Chemical Corp. (ChemChina), which plans to buy Swiss seeds and pesticide maker Syngenta, will promptly start preparations Read More
Rendering of Syngenta Seedcare Institute expansion
Seed/BiotechExpansion Of Syngenta’s North America Seedcare In…
February 4, 2016
As demand for seed treatment knowledge and products grows among farmers, retailers and others in the seed industry, Syngenta is Read More
Soybean Field
Industry NewsArysta LifeScience Strengthens Sales Team
February 4, 2016
Arysta LifeScience North America recently announced three new personnel additions: Jake Cook and Peter White are Territory Sales Managers for Read More
Davor Pisk Syngenta COO
Crop InputsSyngenta COO: Why ChemChina Offer Beat Monsanto’s
February 4, 2016
Syngenta Chief Operating Officer Davor Pisk says he is confident the proposed acquisition by ChemChina will ultimately help preserve choice Read More
Young corn plants in soil
Crop InputsKoch Biological Solutions Invests In Pathway Biologic
February 4, 2016
An affiliate of Koch Biological Solutions, LLC has acquired a minority equity position in, and entered into collaboration with, Pathway Read More
Crop InputsABG: China Signs Off On Monsanto’s Roundup Ready …
February 3, 2016
Monsanto Co. on Wednesday announced it plans to launch its Roundup Ready 2 Xtend soybeans in time for the 2016 Read More
Syngenta headquarters in Basel, Switzerland
Crop Inputs6 Things To Know About The ChemChina-Syngenta Deal
February 3, 2016
After months of rumors and speculation, Syngenta has announced that ChemChina has offered to acquire the Swiss-based company. “In making Read More
FertilizerPhosphorus: Is Band Or Broadcast Application The Better…
February 3, 2016
Is band or broadcast application the better method when it comes to phosphorus? The answer to this question depends mostly Read More
Syngenta Sign
Crop InputsChemChina Nearing Deal To Buy Syngenta For Record $43 B…
February 3, 2016
China National Chemical Corp. is nearing an agreement to buy Swiss pesticide-and-seeds-maker Syngenta AG for about 43.7 billion francs ($42.8 Read More
Herbicides2015 ASA Trials Demonstrate Valent Fierce XLT Herbicide…
February 2, 2016
Valent U.S.A. today announced that new Fierce XLT Soybean Herbicide ranks in the top tier among growers for length of Read More
Crop Protection Products in storage
Paul SchrimpfCrop Input Selling: Return Of The Price List
February 2, 2016
It was a good 15 years ago, shortly after I first started writing for this esteemed publication, that it all Read More
Potash storage at Growmark
FertilizerThe Phosphate And Potash Outlook For 2016
February 2, 2016
Like other commodities, prices of the leading plant nutrient products dropped sharply in 2015. At this writing, the price of Read More
Chesapeake Bay
StewardshipKeeping A Watch On Water Issues
February 2, 2016
During a down cycle in the market, it’s difficult to think about investing for the long term. For retail businesses, Read More
Young Corn Plants
FertilizerNutrient Considerations For Low Corn Prices
February 2, 2016
Corn prices are low and many producers are asking tough questions about their nutrient management programs. Here are some suggestions Read More