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Release No. 0301.08
Office of Communications (202)720-4623

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WASHINGTON, D.C., Nov 24, 2008

U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Ed Schafer made the following statement regarding today's fourth quarter farm financial forecast published by USDA's Economic Research Service.

"America's agriculture continues a positive growth - a fifth straight year of record crop receipts, historically sound farm asset balance, and the third-highest net cash income over the last 33 years. Farmers remain prudent in their borrowing amid increased costs for seed, fuel and fertilizer. Livestock receipts of the past two years are up although producers are managing the increased costs to their operations. Producers' total expenses are expected to increase nearly 16 percent this year. The marketplace, not the government, has provided the source of income, with crop supports falling from $11 billion to $810 million in three years."