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House Agriculture Committee Prepares for Farm Bill by Exploring Economic Outlook in Rural America

Washington, D.C. - Today, the House Agriculture Committee held a hearing to review the economic challenges facing rural America. Members heard from several witnesses who highlighted these factors, including low farm commodity prices, declining net farm income, tightening credit conditions, a strong dollar, and unfair trade practices by foreign competitors.

“There is real potential for a crisis in rural America,” said Chairman K. Michael Conaway. “Net farm income for America's farmers and ranchers has fallen 50 percent over the past four years with the collapse in commodity prices. As we begin the farm bill process, these economic realities must be front and center. The farm bill serves as a safety net for producers, helping manage risk in difficult times. We are in those times now, and we must deliver solutions that work for our nation’s farmers and ranchers.”