Politics is trumping the best interests of both farmers and everyone who eats..

For two years, policy advocates and concerned citizens have been calling on Congress to pass a full and fair five-year farm bill.  We watched two failed attempts, followed by a terrible last-minute extension of the old farm bill at the end of 2012. This one failed to reform outdated farm subsidies and boldly stripped all funding from nearly a dozen critical programs that help farmers and communities. 

Congress needs to act now, and it is our job to make them act!  Tell your legislators: “Two years is too long without a farm bill.  We need a full and fair five-year farm bill that reforms outdated farm subsidies, protects our natural resources, and invests in a healthier future for all of us - and we need it now!”

What’s at stake if Congress doesn’t pass a bill?  We’ll lose out on programs that help train future farmers and invest in the next generation of growers.  We’ll say goodbye to funding for programs that improve healthy food access by linking more consumers to local farmers’ markets and CSAs.  We’ll miss out on programs that create economic opportunities for rural communities and increase market opportunities for farmers.  And, to add insult to injury, outdated subsidies will remain intact.  In short, we’ll lose out on this chance to build a better future for our nation’s food and farms.

Congress needs to hear from YOU – their constituents – today. Let your legislators know our nation’s farmers and eaters can’t go another year without a farm bill – we need a full and fair five-year farm bill, NOW!

List of the Stranded Programs:

  1. Beginning Farmer and Rancher      Development Program / BFRDP
  2. Value-Added Producer Grant Program      / VAPG
  3. Organic Research and Extension      Initiative / OREI
  4. Farmers Market Promotion Program /      FMPP
  5. National Organic Cost Share      Program / NOCCSP
  6. Rural Microentrepreneur Assistance      Program / RMAP
  7. Outreach and Assistance for      Socially Disadvantaged Farmers and Ranchers Program / OASDFR
  8. Conservation Reserve Program –      Transition Incentives Program / CRP-TIP
  9. Rural Energy for America Program /      REAP
  10. Organic Production and Market Data      Initiatives / ODI

Southern SAWG will be hosting an upcoming conference call with our friends from the National Sustainable Agriculture Coalition on Sept. 25th at 10am CT/ 11am ET.  Call 1-800-977-8002 Code 577467# .

Join us to learn more about the current process in Congress and what the future might hold for sustainable farmers.


Dr. Joe Kemble teaching beginning farmers about tomato diseases during a recent SSAWG field training.

Dr. Joe Kemble teaching beginning farmers about tomato diseases during a recent SSAWG field training.

Pam Kingfisher