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News Release

Release No. 0106.06
Contact:
Offie of Communications (202) 720-4623

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LETTER FROM AGRICULTURE SECRETARY MIKE JOHANNS & FARM BILL FORUM COMMENT SUMMARIES

The leadership of USDA traveled the country last year to hear the opinions of producers and other stakeholders about future farm policy. No one has said it better than President Bush in his greeting to those attending the forums. He said, "The Farm Bill is important legislation that meets real needs. The next Farm Bill should further strengthen the farm economy and preserve this way of life for farmers and ranchers of the future. Hearing your advice is an important step toward meeting these goals."

Many people participated in the 52 farm bill forums held throughout the United States, while others submitted comments through our website and through the mail. I was very pleased to personally host 21 of the forums. I enjoyed every one of those 66 hours of listening to the people whom we serve. All totaled, USDA received more than 4,000 comments throughout this process.

For me, there is no better way to understand the challenges and opportunities in agriculture than to be with and listen to the people whose lives are affected by the policies we enact.

USDA personnel have spent the past several months categorizing and summarizing the comments we received. The 41 summary papers featured below are the product of their work. Each paper contains three sections - one containing factual background on the topic of the paper, another summarizing general opinions expressed, and the third conveying specific, detailed suggestions that were conveyed to us.

These papers are strictly summaries of the opinions and suggestions of those who submitted public comment. These ideas will serve as the basis of USDA policy review and analysis as we prepare for the next farm bill.

I want to extend my sincere gratitude to all those who submitted comments. Thank you for making your voices heard and providing the foundation for USDA's exploration of the best course for future farm policy.

Sincerely,

Mike Johanns

Secretary of Agriculture

Farm Bill Forum Comment Summaries in Adobe PDF files and Microsoft Word Docs. You can view online or download.

 
Agricultural Concentration PDF 55k Word Doc 136k
Agricultural Disaster Assistance PDF 58k Word Doc 148k
Agricultural Pests And Diseases PDF 54k Word Doc 135k
Animal Welfare PDF 52k Word Doc 119k
Biotechnology PDF 52k Word Doc 126k
Commodity Nutrition Assistance Programs PDF 64k Word Doc 154k
Conservation Planning And Technical Assistance PDF 49k Word Doc 113k
Conservation Reserve Program And Conservation Reserve Enhancement Program PDF 53k Word Doc 124k
Conservation Security Program PDF 52k Word Doc 122k
Country Of Origin Labeling PDF 47k Word Doc 116k
Dairy Policy PDF 56k Word Doc 140k
Direct And Counter-Cyclical Program PDF 74k Word Doc 174k
Environmental Quality Incentives Program PDF 54k Word Doc 136k
Farm And Ranch Lands Preservation PDF 53k Word Doc 123k
Farm And Rural Tax Policy PDF 51k Word Doc 120k
Farm Family Income PDF 53k Word Doc 120k
Farm Loan Programs PDF 56k Word Doc 134k
Farm Program Integrity PDF 52k Word Doc 124k
Farm Safety Net PDF 55k Word Doc 152k
Federal Crop Insurance PDF 55k Word Doc 125k
Food Safety PDF 51k Word Doc 117k
Food Stamp Program PDF 69k Word Doc 175k
Forestry Title PDF 69k Word Doc 158k
General Conservation PDF 57k Word Doc 156k
Highly Erodible Land And Wetland Conservation Compliance Provisions PDF 50k Word Doc 120k
Increasing Production Costs PDF 53k Word Doc 128k
International Trade PDF 65k Word Doc 159k
Land Values and Rental Rates PDF 55k Word Doc 138k
Marketing Assistance Loans and Loan Deficiency Payments PDF 63k Word Doc 154k
National Animal Identification System PDF 48k Word Doc 114k
Organic Farming PDF 56k Word Doc 138k
Payment Limits PDF 57k Word Doc 141k
Production Controls PDF 50k Word Doc 112k
Renewable Energy and Biobased Products PDF 53k Word Doc 147k
Research Education And Economics PDF 87k Word Doc 157k
Rural Development Title PDF 68k Word Doc 141k
Rural Health Care And Health Insurance PDF 52k Word Doc 119k
Specialty Crops PDF 50k Word Doc 119k
Sugar PDF 50k Word Doc 116k
Wetlands Conservation Programs PDF 48k Word Doc 115k
Wildlife Habitat Conservation On Private Lands PDF_52k Word_Doc_125k