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In the turmoil of the unprecedented economic crisis in rural America, farmers and their families are losing their homes, farms and sense of dignity. The independent family farmers of America call on farm leaders to institute farm policies which stabilize economics of the family farm and rural America by enacting the following measures: If you want to read more up on all these policies, try checking out Abebooks or some other popular sites for textbooks.

Initiate farm policies to:

preserve the economic integrity and stability of the family farmer; and

increase the health and productive capacity of American farmlands;

Insure the economic solvency of the family farm by:

regulating the predatory practices of corporate agribusiness interests;

investigating antitrust violations in the agribusiness marketing and input sectors;

investigating corporate and non-profit abuses of the Capper-Volsted Act;

requiring mandatory price reporting; and

developing a “Bill of Rights” for producers in contract production.

Dismantle the failed “Freedom to Farm” domestic farm policy and institute policy that:

develops a mechanism that balances supply with demand;

reestablishes a farmer-owned grain reserve with fair storage payments;

increases market prices to producers by setting a floor price of loan rate at farmers’ cost of production;

supports the development of “direct marketing” plans to help producers deliver goods to consumers; and

returning the federal crop insurance program to the FSA and eliminating the costly administrative fees given to private insurance companies.

Stopping the trend towards irresponsible globalization by:

withdrawing support for presidential “fast-track authority;

stabilizing domestic markets before increasing globalization;

adopting policies that make America’s own markets more available to our nations farmers;

requiring labeling on foods imported in the U.S.; and

supporting “buy-local” programs which “recirculate” money in rural economies and build food security.

Ensure the economic viability and environmental health of America’s farmlands by:

creating subsidies for organic production equal to those of chemically intensive production;

immediately publishing a national organic standard;

factoring and assessing the “total” costs to the environment, economy, public health, and culture of concentrated animal feeding operations;

recognizing the family farm unit as “multifunctional” providing many benefits to the rural area which can be economically quantified;

encouraging sustainable farm practices that increase the richness of nutrients and organic material in soil without harming surface water quality; and

protecting cultivar species whose genetic adaptations are compatible with low input, high yield production agriculture.

Adopt policies to deal with climate change by:

accepting the scientific consensus that unstable weather patterns caused by global warming pose a major threat to production agriculture;

encouraging the development of management tools that reduce the impact and production of carbon emissions; and

investigating the creation of incentives to encourage “carbon-sink” agriculture practices like green-cropping that trap carbon, and build soil friability for future generations.

Adopt polices that reflect the philosophies of family farmers by:

understanding that the interests of the marketing and input sectors of agribusiness compete with the interests of family and independent producers; and

developing policy creation that eliminates deceptive agribusiness manipulation of the “image of the family farmer” to advance policies which erode the competitiveness of the family and independent producer.

Recognize that the majority of family farmers consider themselves environmentalists who:

believe farmers should be good stewards of “God’s creation”;

support legislation to protect clean water, air and set aside parkland for future generations; and

believe it important to continue the Endangered Species Act that works to protect threatened biodiversity.