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Kids Will Work on Farms for Years to Come

It was a solution in search of a problem…the Department of Labor’s proposed rule restricting young people from working on farms. Well, late Thursday, DOL, apparently having listened to the thousands of comments received from across the nation, withdrew the proposed rule and suspended the rule making process. Director of Communications for North Carolina Department of Agriculture Brian Long:

“While the idea of making farms safer for children under the age of 16, these rules really went to far to try to do that.”

What made this potential rule particularly worrisome is the advancing age of the American farmer; approaching 60 years in most states. This rule would have been detrimental to the next generation, and generations to come of American farmers.

You can read the official Department of Labor Statement here.

Senate Ag Committee Approves Farm Bill

The Senate Ag Committee has voted to approve the Agriculture Reform, Food and Jobs Act of 2012 authored by Chair Debbie Stabenow and Ranking Member Pat Roberts. The bill eliminates direct payments and emphasizes the need to strengthen risk management tools for farmers – saving billions of dollars. By eliminating unnecessary subsidies, consolidating programs and cracking down on food assistance abuse – the measure will reduce the deficit by 23-billion dollars. It will now go to the full Senate for consideration.

For a comprehensive outline of the Senate Farm Bill markup, visit our website,

Southern Lawmakers See Holes in Farm Bill Safety Net

The Senate Ag Committee voted to send a farm bill to the full Senate Thursday – but Southerners upset by the impact of subsidy cuts on peanuts, rice and cotton vowed a floor fight.

The bill did not have the support of Southerners Saxby Chambliss, John Boozman, Thad Cochran and Minority Leader Mitch McConnell. Arkansas Republican John Boozman…

“The commodity title, as it’s currently written, will have a devastating impact on southern ag, which relies heavily on irrigation and therefore benefits less from crop insurance. Furthermore, the new revenue is designed to augment crop insurance, so this new program leaves gaping holes in the southern safety net.”

MF Global Trustee Testifies Before Senate Committee

Testifying in Washington, D.C. this past week – MF Global trustee James Giddens said investigators have tracked down the 1.6-billion dollars in customer funds that disappeared after the firm’s collapse. Giddens said the analysis of what happened and where the money went has substantially concluded. Now the more complex phase – according to Giddens – is getting it back. is dedicated to serving the agricultural industry in the Carolinas and Virginia with the latest ag news, exclusive regional weather station readings, and key crop market information. The website is a companion of the Southern Farm Network, provider of daily agricultural radio programming to the Carolinas since 1974. presents radio programs, interviews and news relevant to crop and livestock production and research throughout the mid-Atlantic agricultural community.