Desperate for farm program stuff to write about, analysts and ag media have focused on the byzantine ACRE program for paragraphs to fill empty policy pages. Only it's not working too well.
Some pretty good writers are trying their best to explain the new revenue-based ACRE farm program option in the 2008 Farm Bill.To be fair, I have only skimmed over the ACRE concept, but stopped once the flaw for me was revealed. At least, I think it's a game-over detail.
But it's not working. This material just does not seem to cross the barrier between the outside air and the interior of my skull.
I feel like one of the king's subjects in the children's fable about the king's new suit, which is supposedly invisible to foolish people. People refuse to admit that the king looks naked, for fear that others will think them a fool. I wonder if the same thing is happening with the ACRE program. Will people think me foolish, if I just admit that I cannot understand this program? [More]
Producers on a farm with covered commodities and/or peanuts can elect to participate in the ACRE program for all covered commodities and peanut acreage on the farm. Once they elect to participate in ACRE, producers on the farm must remain in the program for the duration of the 2008 Act. [More]
This commandment seems problematic to me. Although you can opt IN later, you cannot opt out, apparently. But farm payments attach to acres - not producers. That's why when tenants change they pick up (or lose) the bucks.
So my question is: if my cash rent contracts are at most 3 year terms, how the heck can I obligate someone else's acres for the full 5 years of the Farm
[To be fair, the answer to this is likely out there somewhere, but either way is a deal-breaker for me. And frankly, until I get done, I haven't got the time to do the deep research.]
[No, I still have 100 acres - thanks for asking.]
For that matter, given the horrendous range of prices and events this year, is there one farmer left standing willing to predict the next 5 weeks, let alone 5 years?