North Carolina Farm Bureau is extremely pleased with today’s defeat of the U.S. Senate farm bill amendment that would have removed the crop insurance premium subsidy for tobacco. North Carolina is the top tobacco producing state in the nation.
U.S. Senators Richard Burr and Kay Hagan both voted against the amendment, showing their understanding of how critical it is that a viable crop insurance program, including tobacco, be maintained to secure a healthy agricultural economy and rural communities.
“Removing this risk management tool would certainly have resulted in the loss of farms, jobs, economic opportunity and well-being in rural North Carolina,” said Larry Wooten, President of North Carolina Farm Bureau.
North Carolina Farm Bureau worked with both Senate offices, as well as American Farm Bureau, to deliver the message that tobacco remains a legal, domestic crop and should be treated fairly. Had the amendment been approved, the result would have been more imported tobacco and more unemployed North Carolinians.
“North Carolina Farm Bureau thanks Senator Burr and Senator Hagan for their bipartisan effort to defeat this amendment, which singled out one commodity and treated it differently from all other commodities covered by the federal crop insurance program,” Wooten said. “Today’s vote emphasizes that we must continue to work together in agriculture to protect the livelihoods of hardworking North Carolina tobacco farmers and their families.”