A Farmers Market: The Economics Behind 2007 Farm Bill Legislation

May 15, 2007May 18, 2007
B-339 Rayburn House Office Building


Session 1: Tuesday, May 15th
Crops and Conservation: The Environmental Impact of Farm Bill Legislation
Dr. Terry Anderson

John and Jean DeNault Senior Fellow
Stanford University 

Click Here to view Dr. Anderson's presentation.

Session 2: Thursday, May 17th
Industrialized Agriculture Policy and Its Affect on Developing Countries 
Dr. David Orden
Professor of Agriculture Policy and Trade,
Virginia Tech

Click Here to view Dr. Orden's presentation.

Session 3: Friday, May 18th
Who Gains from Grain? 
A Discussion of Commodity Programs, Their Beneficiaries, and Potential Reductions
Dr. Bruce Gardner
Distinguished University Professor, University of Maryland
Extension Public Policy & Director of the Center for Agriculture & Natural Resource Policy,
Fmr. Asst. Secretary for Economics, USDA 

Click Here to view Dr. Gardner's presentation.  

Congress is already underway at tackling the difficult questions that confront the 2007 Farm Bill. However, a new era is apparent in the U.S. agricultural industry and several policy concerns are at its forefront: overseas competition, the cost and benefits of subsidies on domestic and international markets, and environmental concerns. Moreover, Congress must consider the American consumer as well as the American farmer. As Congress prepares to re-authorize payments for American farmers, these concerns will shape the upcoming legislation.

To assist Congressional staff with the economic realities of the dynamic agriculture market, the Mercatus Center at George Mason University developed a three-day course to help address the pressing questions behind the 2007 Farm Bill, including:

  • Within the supported crop sector, where do payments end up? Who would lose and who would benefit from a change in policy?
  • How do subsidies affect land and wildlife conservation?
  • Who is actually farming and how has current Farm Bill legislation had an impact on land management?
  • What effect does current American agriculture policy have on global markets, specifically developing countries?