Vilsack: Ag Bankruptcy Problems Won’t Be Solved By One Program
Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack recently said it will take more than a single program to stem the tide of U.S. farm bankruptcies. And he said his latest $3 billion bid to prevent Chapter 12’s, is just one-part of a bigger strategy. Thousands of farms, Vilsack noted, go out of business every year in the U.S., and Vilsack said it’s going to take a lot of work to solve this long-running problem.
“It is obvious to me, that we need more, new and better markets for farmers, generally. When ERS reports that roughly 89% of farms don’t generate a majority of income for the farm family that’s farming the farm, it tells me that there’s more work to be done.”
Vilsack recently announced more than $3 billion in spending from the Inflation Reduction Act to help some 36,000 distressed or delinquent FSA borrowers avoid or address foreclosure. But the Ag Secretary said solving this problem requires new “revenue streams”, which he says the USDA is trying to create.
“Climate-smart agricultural commodities with local and regional food system, with additional competition, with additional processing capacity, with an investment in organic transition, to be able to enable farmers to transition to a higher-value proposition on their farm.”
Vilsack says back-to-back record farm exports the last two-years have provided increased revenue for producers. But soaring input costs, food inflation, supply chain issues and Russia’s war in Ukraine are eating away at farm profits, leaving loan delinquencies a continuing problem for American agriculture.
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