WASHINGTON–Jennifer James, a fourth-generation rice farmer from Newport, Arkansas testified before U.S. Senator John Boozman (R-AR) and members of the Senate Committee on Agriculture, Nutrition, and Forestry during a hearing on the Farm Bill reauthorization.
Boozman welcomed James before the committee and acknowledged the challenging economic times for agriculture producers. He asked about the importance of the agriculture safety net to her farm and the local community.
“The Title I programs for rice have been life savers, actually business savers. They’ve kept us in business, specifically the PLC program. Our main risk in rice production is price volatility, and so this has helped us tremendously,” James said. “Irrigation is my insurance policy most years. PLC provides protection in multi-year price declines, and it’s not a complex program.”
Boozman and other members of the committee are holding hearings to examine what works in the current Farm Bill and what needs improvement as they prepare to reauthorize the 2014 Farm Bill, which expires September 2018. This was the seventh hearing in advance of writing the next Farm Bill.