Farmers in five Midwestern states claimed just about half of the more than $8.5 billion in trade help from the USDA as compensation for losses due to trade disputes, according to analysis by the American Farm Bureau.
The analysis shows Illinois, Iowa, Minnesota, Nebraska, and Indiana received just about half of the Market Facilitation Program payments that have been made up to May 13. Retaliatory tariffs have been especially hard on soybeans, so soybean farmers received a large share of payment help. The average payment rate was $1.65 per bushel, so soybean producers have received $7 billion as of May 13.
Cotton payments were calculated at six cents per pound, with producers receiving payments totaling $471 million. Dairy received just two percent of payments sent out as of May 13, coming in at $180 million in assistance. Corn producers also received only two percent of payments so far. The payment rate for corn farmers was one cent per bushel, with farmers receiving about $132 million.
The American Farm Bureau says those direct payments are “no replacement for lost markets.” However, they do help farmers meet some immediate financial needs.