America’s Farm Bill provides support, certainty, and stability to our nation’s farmers, ranchers, and forest managers by enhancing farm support programs, improving crop insurance, maintaining disaster programs, and promoting and supporting voluntary conservation. So what are we hearing about the 2023 Farm Bill?
Although nothing is certain yet, here is a list of potential changes on the 2023 Farm Bill Update:
1. The 2023 Farm Bill and Marijuana
The 2023 Farm Bill is very likely to include several provisions that relate to hemp and cannabinoids. The current dividing line between hemp and marijuana is 0.3% THC. The 2023 Farm Bill may increase the allowable THC amount to 1%.
2. Reform of Government Food Assistance Programs
Republicans in the House Ag Committee have called for a revamp of the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP, or commonly known as “food stamps”) eligibility which requires a minimum amount of employment and training.
3. Mental Health in Farming
The new Farm Bill also includes the STRESS Act, which will address the mental and emotional strains of farming specifically for farmers’ mental health.
4. Modifications to Farm Subsidy Policy
The new bill would enable some farm owners to once again be eligible for farm subsidies. Farmers with incomes above $900,000 would be eligible for commodity subsidies.
There are rumors that our legislature will kick the can down the road and not create new legislation until next year. If that happens then that creates a new set of problems.
WHO IT EFFECTS
You see, the farm bill isn’t just about farmers and ranchers, it also impacts the environment, public health, and the economy. In other words, the farm bill is really a farm & food bill that funds programs covering crop insurance, financial credit, and export subsidies for farmers, as well as nutrition-assistance support for low-income households.
If a new bill doesn’t get released then some programs stop, some lose funding, and some revert to old legislation.
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