The American Soybean Association (ASA) has applauded passage of omnibus farm legislation by the House of Representatives.

At the same time, ASA called on the Senate to act quickly to write its own version that treats soybeans equitably with other program crops.

"While ASA was not satisfied with the inequitable levels of support for soybeans in the House farm bill, we did support the overall spending and investment levels for agriculture contemplated in the bill," said Bart Ruth, Rising City, NE. "We look forward to working with the Senate Agriculture Committee, in drafting an alternative bill that provides fair and balanced treatment for soybean producers."

Ruth's remarks followed House passage of the Agriculture Security Act, which had been approved by the House Agriculture Committee, in July. At that time, ASA had clearly expressed concerns that the bill does not provide levels of support for soybeans that are equitable with support provided to other major crops These concerns focused on fixed payments and target prices for soybeans that do not reflect historical price relationships with other program crops.

Despite these objections, ASA strongly defended the spending allocations for commodity, conservation, research, trade and rural development programs in the House bill against amendments that would have significantly shifted funding allocations. ASA state affiliates actively participated in the successful effort to protect the overall farm program safety net.

"ASA continues to support the funding level provided in the House bill," Ruth stated. "We are working closely with the Senate Agriculture Committee and other Senate offices to craft alternative legislation that fully utilizes these funds, and also addresses our concern that farm programs be fair and balanced between program crops. ASA hopes the Senate can act quickly and conclude the farm bill process before adjourning this year.

"However," Ruth concluded, "the Senate should not allow this year's timetable to dictate acceptance of the House farm bill. U.S. soybean producers need long-term legislation that ensures equitable treatment of the Nation's most valuable export crop."

More details on ASA policy can be found at http://www.SoyGrowers.com.

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