The recently passed farm bill reflects the shifting eating habits among the nation’s population, with a growing presence of new types of farmers represented in the bill.
New York Times: Organic farmers, fruit growers and hemp producers all did well in the new bill. An emphasis on locally grown, healthful foods appeals to a broad base of their constituents
“While traditional commodities subsidies were cut by more than 30 percent to $23 billion over 10 years, funding for fruits and vegetables and organic programs increased by more than 50 percent over the same period, to about $3 billion.”
“Money to help growers make the transition from conventional to organic farming rose to $57.5 million from $22 million. Money for oversight of the nation’s organic food program nearly doubled to $75 million over five years.”
“The new attention and government money devoted to healthy foods stem from the growing market power of those segments of the food business, as well as profound shifts in nutrition policy and eating habits across the country.”
“While still in the shadows of traditional farming, organics are the fastest-growing sector of the food business. Support for that movement has traditionally come from Democrats in Congress, but the organic farming provisions in the bill had broad support from both parties.”