Sep 23, 2011  |  Today's News |  ICGA

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE                                                CONTACT: Lindsay Mitchell

September 23, 2011                                                                        (309) 557-3257


ICGA Applauds New Farm Program Option Proposal 


BLOOMINGTON, Ill.— Illinois corn farmers applaud the reforms to federal farm policy proposed today by Senators Sherrod Brown (D-OH), John Thune (R-SD), Dick Durbin (D-IL), and Richard Lugar (R-IN).  The Aggregate Risk and Revenue Management (ARRM) program would eliminate direct payments and counter-cyclical farm programs and replace them with an improved revenue-based safety net that combines the Average Crop Revenue Election (ACRE) and Supplemental Revenue Assistance Payments (SURE) program from the 2008 Farm Bill.

ARRM would change a few aspects of the ACRE program included in the 2008 Farm Bill including moving from a state trigger to a crop reporting district trigger, using Olympic average revenue (the 5-year Olympic average of yield x harvest price), and making the process easier for farmers and administrators.

ICGA President and Monticello, IL corn farmer Jim Reed said, “Our thanks to this forward-thinking group of Senators for listening to farmers and responding to our needs.  We look forward to working with these gentlemen on additional important updates to their proposal, but are excited that the initial program closely mirrors what Illinois corn farmers have already indicated they need in a farm program.”

ICGA’s farm policy proposal, the Agriculture Disaster Assistance Program (ADAP) also includes the above mentioned changes to the ACRE program.  One additional area that we look forward to discussing is keeping any farm program as simple as possible.  The ACRE and SURE programs are both very complicated for farmers and administrators to understand.

According to Reed, the most important aspect of ARRM and ADAP is that they manage revenue risk.  “We learned years ago that offering a revenue-based safety net is the best way to ensure that Americans have an affordable, reliable supply of farm products.  Managing price does no good when farmers experience a crop failure and have no bushels to sell, putting farmers out of business and jeopardizing the American agricultural industry.”

The Illinois Corn Growers Association will continue to work with Senator Durbin to make the 2012 Farm Bill the most effective risk management program it can be while still responding to the need to address the federal budget deficit.