Why do we subsidize farmer's during hard times, but not get cheaper produce when profits are rolling in?

Update:

I have to admit that I am torn on this issue. I know it's important for the United States to have a steady farming industry even during hard times and I REALLY don't want the government actually physically running the farms.

FYI, I'm a libertarian.

Update 2:

Actually a lot of helpful insight. I especially appreciate the farmers who pitched in.

14 Answers

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  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago
    Favorite Answer

    Farming as it was once known i.e. the family owned and operated farm, has all but disappeared. We now have Corporate farming, and as you should know the Government is all for giving corporations a hand out. Same as the oil Company's, they are making record profits, yet gas is going up,and up. If any one out there really cares about the plight of the few small farmers that are left, you will buy locally grown produce and if there are no farms in your area, buy organically grown produce from your market, traditionally this produce is grown on a smaller, independently owned farm. We do not need Proctor and Gamble growing genetically modified food for America.

    • random_man
      Lv 7
      5 years agoReport

      92% of all US farms are owned by families. Proctor and Gamble does not grow GMO food, or any food for that matter, they are a consumer packaged goods company, and they don't even process much food at all - most of their products are health & beauty items. wow.

  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    to answer your question, we have to correct it first

    "we subsidize farmers ALL the time " so cheaper produce will not happen

    if you will go to

    Environmental Working Groups and look at the farm subsidy data base ,,it will make your head swim to realize what some farmers are getting

    ewg.org I believe

    Rank Recipient*

    ✴ ownership information available Location Total USDA Subsidies

    1995-2005

    1 Riceland Foods Inc Stuttgart, AR 72160 $541,061,667

    2 Producers Rice Mill Inc ✴ Wynne, AR 72396 $308,013,630

    3 Farmers Rice Coop Sacramento, CA 95851 $145,530,214

    4 Chs Inc Saint Paul, MN 55164 $49,037,456

    5 Tyler Farms ✴ Helena, AR 72342 $37,009,744

    6 Dnrc Trust Land Management - Exem Helena, MT 59620 $35,314,692

    7 1st National Bank Sioux Falls-sep Sioux Falls, SD 57101 $28,871,163

    8 Ducks Unlimited Inc ✴ Rancho Cordova, CA 95670 $28,338,088

    NOTE: Over 80 percent of the payments listed for Ducks Unlimited are 'cost share' reimbursements for technical assistance to restore wetlands at many locations on private lands not owned by D.U. The technical assistance is provided to private landowners under contractual arrangement through USDA's Natural Resources Conservation Service.

    9 Pilgrim's Pride Corporation ✴ Pittsburg, TX 75686 $26,461,206

  • BUTCH
    Lv 5
    1 decade ago

    Do you know that when crops are really good & we have a surplus that can not be sold because of no buyers, the goverment pays the farmer to keep some acres empty the next year to drive up prices. This is after the goverment buys the surplus from the year before.I am a farm boy from upstate MAINe & no one paid us not to plant. We did good when prices were high (not often) & struggled when they were low. But we didnt live in the mid west where the BIG farms are.

    • random_man
      Lv 7
      5 years agoReport

      There are no programs that pay farmers not to grow crops. And farmers in Maine are eligible for the same programs as farmers in the Midwest.

  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    I definitely don't believe in subsidizing farmers but I also don't believe in FREE TRADE. You can't expect farmers to compete with other countries for produce. Sugarcane grown in Florida is the only crop that has any type of protection against cheap overseas markets. Bush just signed a corn agreement with Brazil. That will put the dollar signs out of our corn farmers eyes in a hurry. No they shouldn't get special treatment but then neither should their competitors from overseas.

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  • 1 decade ago

    The idea is protectionism. The government deems it necessary to protect the farming industry in America so we don't have to rely on foreign countries for grain.

    Personally I am torn on this issue being raised on a family farm the did help in the bad years.

    However, for the best economic effectiveness the government needs to keep their hands off.

    • random_man
      Lv 7
      5 years agoReport

      The US is a net exporter (by a lot) of grain. We do not have any protectionist tarriffs on grains.

  • 1 decade ago

    Because Farmers don't actually set the prices. Distributors do, and once you're acclimated to higher prices, what benefit is there to lowering them? Is demand for FOOD going to go down? No.

  • 1 decade ago

    Personally, I believe we should stop paying them to not grow crops, as they do in Northern Georgia, and allow them to begin unrestricted growing of corn and other vegetables, so we can bring prices down, and produce more plants for alternative fuel projects. The more alternative fuels, the less OPEC will matter. Kill our dependence upon foreign powers!

    Source(s): Former plowboy from Blue Ridge, Ga.
    • random_man
      Lv 7
      5 years agoReport

      There are no programs that pay farmers not to grow crops.

  • 1 decade ago

    What you speak of is what government price fixing causes. It's why I'm a conservative. They have no reason to lower the price. The market can't force them to.

    Why do we pay farmers to let ground lay dormant when they could plant it and make corn or soybeans for biofuel?

    That would make me conservative happy - less subsidies

    and

    liberal global warming nuts happy too - biofuel

    Source(s): farmboy
    • random_man
      Lv 7
      5 years agoReport

      There are no programs that pay farmers not to grow crops.

  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    most of them file bankruptcy every 7-10 years who do you think pays for there tractors

  • 1 decade ago

    We should stop all farm subsidies and end all "soil bank" programs.

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