Philippe van den Bossche Speaks on the New Farm Bill and Its Benefits for Organic Farmers
In response to an article published by Sustainableagriculture.net, impact investor and advocate of sustainable agriculture, Philippe van den Bossche, discusses the Farm Bill and how it will impact the future of organic farming in the US.
New York, NY (PRWEB) March 13, 2014
Philippe van den Bossche, an impact investor and advocate of sustainable agriculture, responds to an article published by sustainableagriculture.net on January 31st, highlighting how organic farmers will benefit from provisions of the Farm Bill.
According to the January 31st article published by Sustainable Agriculture, titled “What is in the 2014 Farm Bill for Sustainable Farms and Food Systems?” a new Farm Bill has been undergoing House and Senate voting. The article gave some specific details relating to the Farm bill and its positive effect on the future of organic farming.
The following are some of the benefits to organic farmers, as well as the benefits for those who have recently decided to shift their conventional farming operations to more sustainable practices.
Farmers will receive crop insurance subsidies. When farmers suffer or take a loss for the year, the government will pay 62% of farmers’ crop insurance premiums.
- For the next decade, crop insurance has been expanded by more than $7 billion.
- For rice and peanut growers, the government will pay a subsidy when the price for those crops drop.
- $30 million will be provided for programs that encourage customers to buy locally produced farm goods.
- SNAP stamps receivers are encouraged to consume more, locally produced, fruits and vegetables.
- The Beginning Farmer and Rancher Development Program will provide $100 million for new farmer training programs. New farmers will also receive microloans and financial training.
- Increments of advance payments to beginning farmers will ensure the potential of the next generation of farmers within USDA’s new agricultural conservation easement programs.
- The National Organic Certification Cost-Share Program will now receive $11.5 million annually. This will help with the costs of annual certification for organic farmers and handlers.
- The Organic Agriculture Research and Extension Initiative will get $20 million annually.
- The National Organic Program will receive $5 million for technological upgrades.
- Organic farmers are given exemptions from conventional check offs. They will allow the organic sector as a whole to establish a check off program if so desired.
- A provision of $600 million for research to support specialty crops, organic agriculture, and beginning farmers.
Philippe van den Bossche, an impact investor and advocate of sustainable agriculture, says that the new Farm Bill does not go far enough to impact the future of organic farmers positively. “These new bill provisions contain meager funding and benefits for organic farmers,” says van den Bossche. “There will be a dearth of funding and support for those looking to make the move to organic. This bill will provide them with some, but not enough training and aid needed to become successful. Needless to say, it is, at least, a small step forward for organic farming!”
Philippe van den Bossche is an impact entrepreneur and investor and Chairman/Owner of Advancing Eco Agriculture (AEA), a leading organic agricultural and horticultural consulting and manufacturing company located in Middlefield, Ohio. AEA provides consulting services and specialty nutritional products to farms throughout the United States and Canada. Mr. van den Bossche is an advocate for organic farming and agriculture.