The lack of a safety net for farm income in the FAIR Act has become evident in recent years because of the necessity of federal legislation each year, 1998-2001, to support farm income. In recent years, U.S. agriculture has experienced a rapid loss of mid-size family farms. The number of small-size farms has increased substantially and the number of large farms has increased slowly. The Farmers Union Farm Bill Proposal is a targeted plan which utilizes varying loan rates based on the USDA's full cost of production for program crops and a Farmer Owned Reserve (FOR). The proposed loan rates decrease as the value of the crop loans increase. The FOR is targeted towards a Limited Renewable Energy Reserve and a Humanitarian Assistance Reserve. The objectives of the study were to develop a distribution of farms in North Dakota by size and estimate the statewide government cost of the Farmers Union Proposal under the baseline and Farmers Union price scenario and compare it to the continuation of the FAIR Act.


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