The American Soybean Association (ASA) today voiced opposition to proposed cuts included in President Donald Trump’s FY2019 budget, including reductions in the federal crop insurance program through a cap on adjusted gross income (AGI) and a reduction in premium subsidy, and elimination of the Foreign Market Development program and Market Access Program. ASA President John Heisdorffer, a farmer from Keota, Iowa, issued a statement warning Congress to avoid the cuts, which would do significant harm to the nation’s soybean farmers:
“The proposed cuts in crop insurance and farm programs make this budget a non-starter. We’ve opposed cuts to crop insurance from Republican and Democratic administrations alike. This budget revisits those cuts to an even greater degree, cutting crop insurance by approximately 30 percent. It would also eliminate the MAP and FMD export promotion programs, which we rely on to expand our reach into new and existing export markets around the world. Additionally in this budget, we’re looking at ill-advised cuts to international food assistance programs, conservation programs and to valuable agricultural research.
“As the farm economy continues to struggle in its recovery, farmers cannot afford these backbreaking cuts. And while we understand that the White House budget is considered by many to be an illustrative policy document, we are concerned that this approach only emboldens those in Congress that would see these programs significantly reduced or entirely eliminated. We strongly urge Congress to push this budget to the side and continue to advance practical farm policy.”