Lawmakers are looking to cut costs in the new farm bill. Minnesota Congressman Collin Peterson says much of the savings will come from replacing direct subsidies with an insurance program. The crop insurance will subsidize farm income if commodity prices fall below certain levels.
Farmers' safety net is now a money bag
Designed as a safety net, crop insurance was meant to cushion farmers from the multitude of risks that farming is famous for, from hailstorms to floods, the Star Tribune reports. But now, about 80 percent of the country's crop insurance policies are revenue policies, protecting farmers not only from weather and yield losses, but also from drops in prices.