Farmers expect more Trump tariff payments in 2020

Although farmers and ranchers overwhelmingly believe they will emerge as winners from the Sino-U.S. trade war, they also expect the Trump administration will send them billions of dollars in trade-war payments on 2020 crops yet to be planted, according to a Purdue University poll released Tuesday.

More students in jeopardy if USDA tightens SNAP rules

Two weeks ago, the USDA said that up to 982,000 children would lose automatic access to free meals at school under its plan to tighten SNAP eligibility rules. Now a study by the Urban Institute says an additional 1.05 million children would be affected indirectly because they attend schools in low-income areas that serve meals for free to all students.

USDA embraces hemp as a crop, but many hurdles remain for growers

At the same time that the agency opened the gate for farmers across the nation to grow industrial hemp in 2020, the USDA tempered optimism about a new, money-making crop on Tuesday with caution of obstacles for an emerging industry. The hottest hemp product, cannabidiol (CBD), is sold in a gray …

USDA takes an earlier look at the long-term crop forecast

Almost unnoticed, the USDA has shifted to an earlier reference point for an arcane but important document that helps shape the federal budget and provides a first look at the likely size of next year's crops. The change creates "additional uncertainties," said chief economist Robert Johansson on Monday, but the overall reliability of the 10-year agricultural baseline should be little affected.

USDA expects to enroll ‘a large number of acres’ in Conservation Reserve

The USDA will hold its first “general” signup for the land-idling Conservation Reserve Program under the 2018 farm bill in early December, and “we expect to enroll a large number of acres,” said Deputy Agriculture Secretary Steve Censky on Thursday.

With relocation, ERS losing top expert on consolidation

Thanks to the Trump administration’s decision to move the agency out of Washington, the USDA’s Economic Research Service is losing its top expert on market consolidation at a time when declining competition in agriculture is under increased scrutiny from policymakers and government officials.(No paywall)

One-year wonder: U.S. soy stockpile to shrink as quickly as it grew

Aided by the Sino-U.S. trade war, the U.S. soybean inventory doubled to a record 913 million bushels in one year, the government said on Thursday. At the same time, the USDA estimated that total will be cut in half by next September.

Farm activists seek ‘robust’ fair-play rules at USDA

The USDA should provide strong protections for livestock and poultry growers in their dealings with meatpackers and processors, said farm activists on Thursday in delivering petitions signed by more than 84,000 people in support of a “robust” fair-practices rule.

Congressional Black Caucus opposes tighter SNAP eligibility rules

The Trump administration proposal to tighten eligibility rules for food stamps “will push struggling families and children further into poverty, and we strongly urge USDA to rescind it immediately,” said the 55 members of the Congressional Black Caucus on Wednesday.

Additional week to enroll in Dairy Margin Coverage subsidy

More than 21,200 farmers have enrolled in the new dairy support program created by the 2018 farm bill, said Agriculture Undersecretary Bill Northey on Thursday, announcing a one-week extension of the signup period.