Texas A&M’s Ag and Food Policy chief Joe Outlaw, who advises both parties on the House and Senate Ag Committees, predicts a new farm bill won’t get done until the summer of 2025.
Renowned in his field, Dr. Outlaw says farm bills take months to write, pass, and enact. The shortest he’s seen, is nine months, time eaten up this year by political dysfunction and the election calendar. On a Farm Policy Facts “Groundwork” podcast.
“There’s a little bit of rumblings that they want to get it done in 2024. I don’t expect it to be done in ’24 unless something wild happens after the election, and even then, if the House or Senate flips, it’s going to be enough change that I don’t think it will happen early in ’25, either.”
He says that means later, in the summer of ’25. Not a good prospect when American Farm Bureau economists predict in a Market Intel report on USDA data the largest recorded drop in net farm income, down more than 25 percent from last year.
AFBF President Zippy Duvall is calling on Congress to bring down farming costs and pass a new farm bill. But Managing Director of Government Affairs Ryan Yates tells us.
“I think, both for the House and the Senate, there’s a great deal of distance between the chairmen and woman and ranking members that still need to be resolved.”
One example is a proposal by Senate Ag Chair Debbie Stabenow to shift more Title I funds to crop insurance and make producers choose between the two.
“We don’t see a ‘one or the other’ type of an approach. I think that would be a mistake to have to give up one risk management program for another. I think that would be a problem.”
Democrats insist they won’t give up SNAP or climate dollars for farm programs, and House Ag Democrats just issued a memo saying so.