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 Collection: Congressional Research Service Reports
The 1995 Farm Bill: Research, Education, and Extension Issues

The 1995 Farm Bill: Research, Education, and Extension Issues

Date: November 30, 1996
Creator: Rawson, Jean M.
Description: The House Agriculture Committee has proposed extending Title XVI of the 1990 farm act (P.L. 101-624) for two years. Currently, the title will expire at the end of 1995. The title includes funding authority for the U.s. Department of Agriculture's (USDA) in-house research programs, as well as federal support for cooperative research, higher education, extension programs in the States, and several research grant programs. This report discusses efforts underway to extend this title and reform future legislation. It also outlines federal spending in these areas.
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The 1996 Farm Bill: Comparisons of Selected Provisions with Previous Law

The 1996 Farm Bill: Comparisons of Selected Provisions with Previous Law

Date: April 4, 1996
Creator: Food and Agriculture Section
Description: Final congressional approval was given to H.R. 2854, the Federal Agricultural Improvement and Reform (FAIR) Act, otherwise known as the "1996 farm bill," on March 28, 1996. President Clinton signed the bill into law on April 4, 1996 (P.L. 104-127). In tabular format, this CRS report lays out in descriptive, rather than legislative language, the major provisions of the new farm bill in contrast to preceding law.
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The 2002 Farm Bill: Comparison of Commodity Support Provisions with the House and Senate Proposals, and Prior Law

The 2002 Farm Bill: Comparison of Commodity Support Provisions with the House and Senate Proposals, and Prior Law

Date: August 1, 2002
Creator: Womach, Jasper
Description: A new farm bill, the Farm Security and Rural Investment Act of 2002 (P.L. 107- 171), covering crop years 2002-2007, was signed into law May 13, 2002. The previous farm bill (now prior law) was the Federal Agriculture Improvement and Reform Act of 1996 (P.L. 104-127), popularly called the FAIR Act. Commodity support authority in the FAIR Act (Title I, Agricultural Market Transition Act (AMTA)) was set to expire after crop year 2002. This report provides a side-by-side comparison of prior law (AMTA), with most commodity support provisions of Title I of the new law, and the House and Senate farm bills.
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The 2002 Farm Bill: Overview and Status

The 2002 Farm Bill: Overview and Status

Date: September 3, 2002
Creator: Becker, Geoffrey S. & Womach, Jasper
Description: This report discusses the provisions of the 1996 farm bill, which was due to expire in 2002 but was extended for an additional 6 years on May 13, 2002 by President Bush (P.L. 107-171). The new law is called the "Farm Security and Rural Investment Act (FSRIA) of 2002. The new law generally supersedes the previous omnibus farm bill, the Federal Agriculture Improvement and Reform (FAIR) Act of 1996 (P.L. 104-127). The new farm law has attracted widespread criticism both in the U.S. and abroad. This report discusses these criticisms as well as the defenses of the law's proponents.
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The 2002 Farm Bill: Overview and Status

The 2002 Farm Bill: Overview and Status

Date: May 3, 2002
Creator: Becker, Geoffrey S. & Womach, Jasper
Description: The Federal Agriculture Improvement and Reform, or FAIR, Act of 1996 (commonly known as the "farm bill"), which was due to expire in 2002, is expected to be extended for another six years when President Bush signs the bill into law. This report discusses the provisions of the new "farm bill," including the federal spending involved.
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The 2002 Farm Bill: Overview and Status

The 2002 Farm Bill: Overview and Status

Date: June 3, 2002
Creator: Becker, Geoffrey S. & Womach, Jasper
Description: This report discusses the provisions of the 1996 farm bill, which was due to expire in 2002 but was extended (P.L. 107-171) for an additional 6 years on May 13, 2002.
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The 2002 Farm Bill: Overview and Status

The 2002 Farm Bill: Overview and Status

Date: July 3, 2002
Creator: Becker, Geoffrey S. & Womach, Jasper
Description: The Federal Agriculture Improvement and Reform, or FAIR, Act of 1996 (commonly known as the "farm bill"), which was due to expire in 2002, is expected to be extended for another six years when President Bush signs the bill into law. This report discusses the provisions of the new "farm bill," including the federal spending involved.
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The 2002 Farm Law at a Glance

The 2002 Farm Law at a Glance

Date: June 7, 2002
Creator: Becker, Geoffrey S.
Description: On May 13, 2002, President Bush signed the Farm Security and Rural Investment Act (FSRIA) of 2002 into law (P.L. 107-171). FSRIA is the latest in a long line of omnibus, multi-year farm bills. The 2002 law is the successor to the last omnibus measure, the Federal Agriculture Improvement and Reform Act of 1996 (P.L. 104-127). This report, to be updated if events warrant, provides selected highlights.
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The 2008 Farm Bill: A Summary of Major Provisions and Legislative Action

The 2008 Farm Bill: A Summary of Major Provisions and Legislative Action

Date: June 19, 2008
Creator: Johnson, Renée; Becker, Geoffrey S. & Capehart, Tom
Description: The report discusses the 2008 farm bill (H.R. 2419), covering a wide range of programs including The Food, Conservation, and Energy Act of 2008, farm credit, agricultural conservation, research, rural development, and foreign and domestic food programs, among others.
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The 2008 Farm Bill: Major Provisions and Legislative Action

The 2008 Farm Bill: Major Provisions and Legislative Action

Date: October 3, 2008
Creator: Johnson, Renée; Becker, Geoffrey S.; Capehart, Tom; Chite, Ralph M.; Cowan, Tadlock; Gorte, Ross W. et al.
Description: The report discusses the 2008 farm bill (H.R. 2419), covering a wide range of programs including The Food, Conservation, and Energy Act of 2008, farm credit, agricultural conservation, research, rural development, and foreign and domestic food programs, among others.
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The 2013 Farm Bill: A Comparison of the Senate-Passed Bill (S. 954) and House- Reported Bill (H.R. 1947) with Current Law

The 2013 Farm Bill: A Comparison of the Senate-Passed Bill (S. 954) and House- Reported Bill (H.R. 1947) with Current Law

Date: June 14, 2013
Creator: Chite, Ralph M.
Description: Report that provides a side-by-side comparison of every provision in the House Agriculture Committee-reported and Senate-passed farm bills with each other and with current law or policy, as amended and extended by the fiscal cliff bill.
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2014 Farm Bill Provisions and WTO Compliance

2014 Farm Bill Provisions and WTO Compliance

Date: April 22, 2015
Creator: Schnepf, Randy
Description: This report briefly describes the relevant World Trade Organization (WTO) rules governing domestic support programs under the Agreement on Agriculture (AoA) and the Agreement on Subsidies and Countervailing Measures (SCM). The report then reviews the current U.S. farm safety net programs in light of their potential for compliance with the AoA and SCM and their potential to affect the success of the current Doha Round of multilateral trade negotiations.
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The Adverse Effect Wage Rate (AEWR)

The Adverse Effect Wage Rate (AEWR)

Date: April 5, 2004
Creator: Whittaker, William G.
Description: This report introduces the adverse effect wage rate (AEWR) and the concerns out of which it grew, from the perspective of labor policy (not of immigration policy). American agricultural employers have long utilized foreign workers on a temporary basis, regarding them as an important manpower resource. Often employed at low wages and under adverse conditions, such alien workers, some argue, may compete unfairly with U.S. workers. To mitigate any "adverse effect" for the domestic workforce, a system of wage floors was developed that applies, variously, both to alien and citizen workers.
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The African Cotton Initiative and WTO Agriculture Negotiations

The African Cotton Initiative and WTO Agriculture Negotiations

Date: January 16, 2004
Creator: Hanrahan, Charles E.
Description: This report discusses the African cotton initiative, over which disagreement has blocked progress on an agreement on agriculture in the current round of multilateral trade negotiations known as the Doha Development Agenda (DDA). In World Trade Organization (WTO) Negotiations on agriculture, a group of African countries have proposed that all subsidies for cotton be eliminated by the end of four years. The proposal also advocates compensating African cotton producing countries for revenues estimated to be lost due to cotton subsidies.
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African Famine: U.S. Response

African Famine: U.S. Response

Date: June 27, 1985
Creator: Hanrahan, Charles E.; Copson, Raymond W.; Epstein, Susan B.; Kenworthy, Holly & Nowels, Larry
Description: This report discusses the 1985 African famine situation, especially regarding U.S. emergency assistance at a time of U.S. domestic budgetary restraints, the adequacy of U.S. measures for monitoring and anticipating food emergencies, and the scale and nature of U.S. agricultural development programs intended to prevent future famines.
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Agricultural Biotechnology: Background and Recent Issues

Agricultural Biotechnology: Background and Recent Issues

Date: September 5, 2006
Creator: Becker, Geoffrey S. & Cowan, Tadlock
Description: Since the first genetically engineered (GE) crops (also called GM [genetically modified] crops, or GMOs, genetically modified organisms) became commercially available in the mid-1990s, U.S. soybean, cotton, and corn farmers have rapidly adopted them. As adoption has spread, there have been policy debates over the costs and benefits of GE products. Issues include the impacts of GE crops on the environment and food safety, and whether GE foods should be specially labeled. Congress generally has been supportive of GE agricultural products, although some Members have expressed wariness about their adoption and regulation. The 109th Congress will likely continue to follow trade developments, particularly the U.S.-EU dispute, as well as U.S. regulatory mechanisms for approving biotech foods.
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Agricultural Biotechnology: Background and Recent Issues

Agricultural Biotechnology: Background and Recent Issues

Date: March 7, 2005
Creator: Becker, Geoffrey S.
Description: Since the first genetically engineered (GE) crops (also called GM [genetically modified] crops, or GMOs, genetically modified organisms) became commercially available in the mid-1990s, U.S. soybean, cotton, and corn farmers have rapidly adopted them. As adoption has spread, there have been policy debates over the costs and benefits of GE products. Issues include the impacts of GE crops on the environment and food safety, and whether GE foods should be specially labeled. Congress generally has been supportive of GE agricultural products, although some Members have expressed wariness about their adoption and regulation. The 109th Congress will likely continue to follow trade developments, particularly the U.S.-EU dispute, as well as U.S. regulatory mechanisms for approving biotech foods.
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Agricultural Biotechnology: The U.S.-EU Dispute

Agricultural Biotechnology: The U.S.-EU Dispute

Date: November 17, 2005
Creator: Hanrahan, Charles E.
Description: In May 2003, the United States, Canada, and Argentina initiated a formal challenge before the World Trade Organization (WTO) of the European Union’s (EU’s) de facto moratorium on approving new agricultural biotechnology products, in place since 1998. Although the EU effectively lifted the moratorium in May 2004 by approving a genetically engineered (GE) corn variety, the three countries are pursuing the case, in part because a number of EU member states continue to block approved biotech products. Because of delays, the WTO is expected to decide the case by December 2005. The moratorium reportedly cost U.S. corn growers some $300 million in exports to the EU annually. The EU moratorium, U.S. officials contend, threatened other agricultural exports not only to the EU, but also to other parts of the world where the EU approach to regulating agricultural biotechnology is taking hold.
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Agricultural Biotechnology: The U.S.-EU Dispute

Agricultural Biotechnology: The U.S.-EU Dispute

Date: March 10, 2006
Creator: Hanrahan, Charles E.
Description: In May 2003, the United States, Canada, and Argentina initiated a formal challenge before the World Trade Organization (WTO) of the European Union’s (EU’s) de facto moratorium on approving new agricultural biotechnology products, in place since 1998. Although the EU effectively lifted the moratorium in May 2004 by approving a genetically engineered (GE) corn variety, the three countries are pursuing the case, in part because a number of EU member states continue to block approved biotech products. Because of delays, the WTO is expected to decide the case by December 2005. The moratorium reportedly cost U.S. corn growers some $300 million in exports to the EU annually. The EU moratorium, U.S. officials contend, threatened other agricultural exports not only to the EU, but also to other parts of the world where the EU approach to regulating agricultural biotechnology is taking hold.
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Agricultural Credit: Institutions and Issues

Agricultural Credit: Institutions and Issues

Date: November 23, 2005
Creator: Monke, Jim
Description: The federal government has a long history of providing credit assistance to farmers by issuing direct loans and guarantees, and creating rural lending institutions. These institutions include the Farm Credit System (FCS), which is a network of borrower-owned lending institutions operating as a government-sponsored enterprise, and the Farm Service Agency (FSA) of the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA), which makes or guarantees loans to farmers who cannot qualify at other lenders. When loans cannot be repaid, special bankruptcy provisions help family farmers reorganize debts and continue farming (P.L. 109-8 made Chapter 12 permanent and expanded eligibility). S. 238 and H.R. 399 (the Rural Economic Investment Act) would exempt commercial banks from paying taxes on profits from farm real estate loans, thus providing similar benefits as to the Farm Credit System.
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Agricultural Credit: Institutions and Issues

Agricultural Credit: Institutions and Issues

Date: March 8, 2007
Creator: Monke, Jim
Description: The federal government has a long history of providing credit assistance to farmers by issuing direct loans and guarantees, and creating rural lending institutions. These institutions include the Farm Service Agency (FSA) of the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA), which makes or guarantees loans to farmers who cannot qualify at other lenders, and the Farm Credit System (FCS), which is a network of borrower-owned lending institutions operating as a government-sponsored enterprise. This report discusses legislation regarding this credit assistance expected in the the 110th Congress. Appropriators will consider funding for FSA’s farm loan programs, and the agriculture committees may consider changes to FSA and FCS lending programs. The 2007 farm bill is expected to be the venue for many of the authorizing issues, although stand-alone legislation may be used for extensive reforms.
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Agricultural Disaster Assistance

Agricultural Disaster Assistance

Date: September 16, 2010
Creator: Shields, Dennis A. & Chite, Ralph M.
Description: This report has two sections. The first provides an overview of the current U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) disaster assistance programs: federal crop insurance, NAP payments, emergency disaster loans, the new Supplemental Revenue Assistance Payments Program (SURE), and four other smaller disaster programs authorized in the 2008 farm bill. The second section reviews the recent history of emergency supplemental farm disaster assistance.
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Agricultural Disaster Assistance

Agricultural Disaster Assistance

Date: April 28, 2010
Creator: Shields, Dennis A. & Chite, Ralph M.
Description: This report has two sections. The first provides an overview of the current USDA disaster assistance programs: federal crop insurance, NAP payments, emergency disaster loans, the new Supplemental Revenue Assistance Payments Program (SURE), and four other smaller disaster programs authorized in the 2008 farm bill. The second section reviews the recent history of emergency supplemental farm disaster assistance.
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Agricultural Disaster Assistance

Agricultural Disaster Assistance

Date: November 2, 2004
Creator: Chite, Ralph M.
Description: The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) offers several permanently authorized programs to help farmers recover financially from a natural disaster, including federal crop insurance, the non-insured assistance program and emergency disaster loans. In recent years, Congress frequently has made supplemental financial assistance available to farmers and ranchers on an ad-hoc basis, most notably in the form of direct crop disaster payments and emergency livestock assistance. Congress provided an estimated $3.1 billion of such assistance in the Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2003 (P.L. 108-7) for 2001 and 2002 crop and livestock losses. Some farm groups would like to see similar assistance provided for 2003 losses, particularly in regions of the Midwest and West that have experienced prolonged drought conditions. To date, no ad-hoc assistance has been made available for 2003 losses.
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