Washington, D.C. (March 2, 2022) – The U.S. House Committee on Agriculture held a hearing March 1, 2022, on “A 2022 Review of the Farm Bill: Commodity Group Perspectives on Title I.” Chairman David Scott, D-Georgia, opened the hearing stating, “As we look ahead to the 2023 Farm Bill, I am committed to making sure that the full breadth of voices from our farmers, ranchers, foresters, and consumers is represented in our efforts. Today’s panel is an integral piece in that process, and I look forward to the months ahead as we discuss the other farm bill titles and issue areas.”
Nine commodity groups testified at the hearing including the U.S. Peanut Federation’s witness, Meredith McNair Rogers, a Camilla, Georgia, peanut grower. Ms. Rogers discussed the rising costs of inputs in peanut production and related analyses from representative farming operations.
“When I met with the General Farm Commodities and Risk Management Subcommittee early last fall, I spoke of increased input costs such as fertilizer and equipment. In addition, I shared with you the delays in equipment parts and repair. Since the Subcommittee’s Roundtable last year, the Center for Rural Prosperity and Innovation at Abraham Baldwin Agricultural College in Tifton, Georgia, has completed its review of U.S. Representative Peanut Farm data covering all the peanut production regions. These 22 peanut farms, from Virginia to New Mexico, have been reviewed for 21 years (2001-2022). What we have learned from this most recent, comprehensive data is that peanut growers have struggled to cover their cost of production.”
Rogers provided the Committee specific data from representative peanut farms that demonstrated the increases in cost of production:
“… The 2021 representative farm update revealed the average expected peanut yield to be 4760 lbs. per acre. In a cash flow analysis, the 2021 total cash flow was $545.97 per ton. The projected 2022 peanut total cash flow cost to produce a ton of peanuts is estimated to be $666.94. This is approximately a 22% increase over the 2021 cost of production.”
The House Agriculture Committee is expected to continue its hearing process in preparation for the 2023 Farm Bill. Fifteen members of the Committee are from peanut producing states. The U.S. Senate Agriculture Committee will announce its 2023 Farm Bill hearings in the near future.
The United States Peanut Federation (USPF) is comprised of the Southern Peanut Farmers Federation, the American Peanut Shellers Association, and the National Peanut Buying Points Association. USPF serves as a unified voice in Washington, D.C. for all sectors of the peanut industry and advocates actively for strong agricultural policy. For additional information, please contact the USPF at (202) 543-7464.