While farm bill conferees appear to be in agreement on $8 or $9 billion in food assistance cuts, notoriously confusing dairy provisions are again slowing down progress on a final bill.
House Speaker John Boehner has referred to “soviet-style” dairy before, but now his opposition appears to have prevented a full conference meeting from happening yesterday.
The University of Minnesota’s food policy research center reports that the new dairy provisions in the 2013 farm bill would cost three times more than proceeding with current dairy policy.
Additionally, researchers there say between 36 and 43 percent of new program benefits would go to the top two percent of dairy farms. They say smaller farms with one hundred cows or less would get about 20 percent of benefits.