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Steep cuts to crop insurance in 2021 budget

The Office of Management and Budget (OMB) today released a proposed Fiscal Year 2021 budget that includes steep cuts to the USDA and federal crop insurance.

The National Crop Insurance Services released this statement in response:

“Last year brought unprecedented challenges for rural America. Even now, farmers and ranchers across the country are dealing with the lingering consequences of weather events that destroyed fields and ruined crops. And there looks to be no reprieve from the ongoing rural recession: The USDA estimates that farm cash flow will tighten this year, dropping more than $10 billion, or 9%, from 2019.

“The federal crop insurance program reacted quickly and efficiently to keep many farmers afloat during this difficult time. It’s no wonder then that the nation’s farm organizations teamed up in late 2019 to ask Congress to reject any attempts to cut crop insurance and weaken the farm safety net when it’s needed most.

“It’s inexplicable as to why OMB would target such a critical risk-management tool for budget cuts. The proposed cuts will make crop insurance unaffordable and unavailable for farmers, seriously undermining the farm safety net."

READ MORE: Trump again proposes large cuts in crop insurance

Crop insurance stats

  1. Crop insurance protects more than 90% of America’s planted crop land acres.
  2. Farmers spend $3.5 to $4 billion per year to purchase crop insurance and bear a significant portion of losses through deductibles.
  3. Crop insurance policies provide to bank and credit lenders who assist farmers through operating loans, especially during a time of low commodity prices.
  4. The federal government spends less than a quarter of 1% of its budget on the farm safety net, including crop insurance.
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