Talk about the 2023 Farm Bill is just beginning in Washington and rural America. Michigan Farm Bureau is already preparing for this monstrous piece of legislation.
“Michigan Farm Bureau has created a task force of members representing our diverse commodities and areas of interest to start looking at what worked well in the last farm bill and what could be improved,” says John Kran, Michigan Farm Bureau’s National Legislative Council. “[We’re also] trying to position ourselves so we can have that conversation. We’re having some of it now, but the bulk of it’s going to have to happen likely next year and maybe even later.”
The road to get there won’t be without challenges. Before the current Farm Bill expires the end of 2023, the country will go through a midterm election.
“[That] could very drastically change in who’s in charge and how it’s getting written and what the areas of emphasis are,” says Kran.
The Biden administration has been focusing on climate and conservation, so Kran and Michigan Farm Bureau are anticipating this to be part of the next farm bill. Kran believes there could be some money from reconciliation to boost funding in those areas.
“We know this broader conversation is going to continue,” he says. “Are there other things we can do to provide farmers with the tools they need to put some of these practices in place to have some guideposts as this conversation evolves? Big picture, it’s a lot of unknowns so we want people to talk bout it now to think through some of this so it can help guide the policy discussion.”
While it’s too soon to make any certain claims, Kran is optimistic this upcoming farm bill will continue to receive bipartisan support.