Producers will gain farm program flexibility and modestly larger support from the federal safety net in the 2018 Farm Bill, which takes effect with 2019 crops. It will be easier to switch between ARC and PLC, marketing loan rates are higher, and there's the possibility of a 15% increase in PLC reference prices.
Congress delivered on the top priority of farm groups: maintenance of a strong crop insurance program. Provisions would remove crop insurance barriers to cover crops.
Here's a run-through of the 10 major points of the five-year farm bill.
1. SELECTION BETWEEN ARC AND PLC
Growers made a one-time election between ARC and PLC for the life of the 2014 Farm Bill. Under the new bill, they will make a selection between ARC and PLC for 2019 and 2020 crops. Beginning in 2021, it's an annual selection. PLC is always the default option.