6 Stories To Read Right Now: Rolling With the Farm Bill Changes

We are past the elation of a new farm bill, now it's time to make decisions

Published on: Feb 18, 2014

People talk about the old idiom "putting the cart before the horse," or, to get ahead of oneself. Some might argue that there are a few political examples of this in recent memory, but I'll let your brain ruminate on that one.

Hopefully, the 2014 Farm Bill won't turn out to be such a situation. USDA Secretary Vilsack has said that USDA has been readying implementation plan for some time now, trying to avoid snafus, make a smooth transition and assist producers in decison-making.

So, here's a roundup of what others are saying about "what's next" on the 2014 farm bill – not only implementation, but also how to understand the the bill's changes, now that it's a law.

NEXT STEPS: We are past the elation of a new farm bill, now its time to make decisions
NEXT STEPS: We are past the elation of a new farm bill, now it's time to make decisions

1. Hurry up and wait. While some policies are in the hopper for this year, others won't be ready until 2015. (audio, 2 minutes) USDA Radio

2. The to-do list. With the bill signed, some programs will be harder to implement than others. Politico

3. Ready to read all 900+ pages? Because of its complexity, there's a lot to digest. But the USDA Economic Research Service has put together a much shorter list of changes in the 2014 bill, and offers a newsletter for continuing updates. USDA ERS

4. Alphabet soup. A "FAQ" on the farm bill with Iowa State University specialist may help you sort out the differences between "SCO," "PLC" and "ARC." And there's some "COOL" discussion, too. Wallace's Farmer

5. If that isn't enough... Get ready to make decisions, the University of Illinois says in its detailed overview of crop producers' options in the new law on FarmDoc Daily (And, plan on getting your farm bill fix each Thursday with Farmdoc!)

6. Sustainable take. For a five-part, piece-by-piece review on provisions outside of crop insurance from the National Sustainable Agriculture Coalition's point of view, check out the NSAC Farm Bill Drill Down

In case you have this in your head now and want to get pumped up for farm bill reconnaissance, here's a Youtube link so you don't have to look it up: