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USDA takes heat from Senate Ag Committee on relief package

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Trade disputes were expected to take a toll on American agriculture, and it has. The administration promised to have the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) deliver aid to farmers, and it has. But not everybody is thrilled by it.

How you feel about the USDA’s trade mitigation package may depend on which commodities you grow. The payouts are all calculated based on fifty percent of the total production numbers you have. However, the rates are calculated on how much damage was done by the countries the U.S. is disputing with. The mitigation package has been met with skepticism by many, including the U.S. Senate Ag Committee. USDA Chief Economist Robert Johannsen explained the method to the committee.

This formula has led to quite a bit of disparity between commodities. You needn’t look any further than the difference in soybean and corn rates. Soybeans expect a payout of $1.65 per bushel. Corn will receive a paltry penny per bushel.

USDA has issued a detailed analysis on how they arrived at their numbers. Even with the release of this data, they may still be defending their decisions if trade disputes continue much longer.