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Rethinking U.S. Agricultural Policy:
Changing Course to Secure Farmer Livelihoods Worldwide


(Back to Executive Summary)

1. See, for example, Rigged Rules and Double Standards: Trade, Globalisation, and the Fight Against Poverty, Oxfam International, 2002, especially pp. 115-117.

2. US Dumping on World Agricultural Markets, Institute for Agriculture and Trade Policy, 2003. Available at

3. Eight major crops -- corn, soybeans, wheat, grain sorghum, barley, oats, cotton, and rice -- account for about 74 percent of total cropland in the US. These same crops are the primary “program” crops and receive about 70-80 percent of all government payments. Five crops -- corn, wheat, cotton, soybeans, and rice -- figure prominently in world export markets and account for over 75 percent of total US crop exports.

4. Estimates of federal outlays are from the March 2003 Congressional Budget Office (CBO) baseline of Commodity Credit Corporation (CCC) and Federal Crop Insurance Corporation (FCIC) projections. These estimates include price and income support programs, export credit programs, conservation programs, and crop insurance programs but do not include other programs authorized in the Farm Bill, such as nutritional assistance (e.g., Food Stamps).

5. Calculation by Public Citizen from data provided in the US Department of Agriculture Farms and Land in Farms Reports. “Farms and Land in Farms,” USDA National Agricultural Statistics Service, Feb. 2001; “Farms and Land in Farms Final Estimates 1993-1994,” USDA NASS, Jan. 1999; “Farms and Land in Farms Final Estimates 1988-1992,” USDA NASS, Jul. 1995; Cited in “Down on the Farm: NAFTA’s Seven-Years War on Farmers and Ranchers in the US, Canada and Mexico,” Public Citizen, 2001.

6. Switchgrass can either be co-fired with coal to produce electricity, while reducing the level of pollutants released into the atmosphere, or it can be processed into ethanol for the production of fuels with consequent environmental benefits.

© 2003 Agricultural Policy Analysis Center. Copying is permitted for educational or noncommercial use with adequate attribution to the source. Visit the APAC website for a complete electronic version of the publication and related materials:

Published in In Motion Magazine October 5, 2003

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