Corporate Farming Notes: Crop insurance premium subsidy caps will bring fairness back to farming

Unlimited crop insurance premium subsidies are a loophole that allow the largest farmers to reap the greatest benefits from government subsidy. That is why we support capping crop insurance premium subsidies at $50,000. We believe that crop insurance should be a safety net, not a government subsidy to finance unlimited expansion.

Our opponents argue that capping subsidies will prompt large farms to leave the crop insurance risk pool and upset the whole system. But, leaving the system would mean walking away from $50,000 in annual subsidy. That doesn’t pencil out. We believe their argument serves only to protect the status quo. 

Caps on crop insurance premium subsidies are needed to bring fairness back to farming. 

President's budget

In the president’s fiscal year 2019 budget, he proposes an across-the-board cut of 10 percent for most crop insurance subsidies. That’s the wrong approach. Instead, we support a hard cap of $50,000 per operator on insurance premium subsidies.

The president’s proposal cuts subsidies for large and small operators alike by 10 percent. That hurts the smallest operators, while protecting unlimited subsides for the largest operators. Hard caps on total payout per operation are a fairer way to cut costs.

Feature photo: Family farmers spend every available daylight hour reaping crops in the fall, and even use lights to harvest into the night. | Photo by Kylie Kai