Ag Specialty Crops Subcommittee Reviews Tobacco Buyout Proposals

Sep 26, 2002

Ag Specialty Crops Subcommittee Reviews Tobacco Buyout Proposals

September 26, 2002 – House Agriculture Specialty Crops Subcommittee Chairman Terry Everett (R-AL) convened a hearing with grower witnesses from seven tobacco growing states - from flue-cured and burley regions, as well as two economists, four congressmen who've introduced buyout measures, and tobacco manufacturers to hear what producers want their tobacco program to look like in the future. The main topic of testimony was discussion on the potential for a buyout of tobacco quota.

"The price tag on buying out the tobacco quota is large and I think Congress and this Subcommittee need some answers to some serious questions," said Specialty Crops Subcommittee Chairman Terry Everett (R-AL). "First, why should the Congress pass legislation to buy out tobacco quota? Second, who should pay for such a buyout? Third, how much would a buyout cost? And fourth, what should a post-buyout tobacco program look like?"

"The history of the tobacco program is long and has served tobacco farmers well for over 60 years. The question we must ask ourselves is, 'Has the tobacco program run its course, should we look toward a different future, and is a buyout a way to get there?'" said Everett.

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