Aid To Farmers Ignores The Little Guys

In a rather shocking report from the Environmental Working Group, a nonprofit government watchdog organization, it seems that the latest round of relief to farmers as part of offsetting the U.S.-China trade war has an age-old look to it. The big guys are getting far more than the little guys.

Highlighting an uneven distribution of the bailout, which was designed to help offset effects of the U.S.-China trade war, the Environmental Working Group said the top 1% of aid recipients received an average of more than $180,000 while the bottom 80% were paid less than $5,000 in aid.

It might be a bit of too much logic for both Reuters and EWG to grasp, but aid may well have been determined by the amount of profit loss to the trade war. If that is the case the larger operations would receive bigger shares.

The Trump administration last year began rolling out federal aid for farmers to compensate for lower farm good prices and lost sales after Washington’s trade dispute with China wiped out a key export market for U.S. agricultural goods.

The first round of aid, announced in 2018, was up to $12 billion. The second round, unveiled last week, involves up to $16 billion dollars and $14.5 billion of that is direct payments.

U.S. farmers, a key constituency of President Donald Trump, have been among the hardest hit in the year-long trade war between the world’s two largest economies. Shipments of soybeans, the most valuable U.S. farm export, to top buyer China sank to a 16-year low in 2018.

“Farm bailout payments designed to offset the impacts of President Trump’s trade war have overwhelmingly flowed to the largest and most successful farmers,” EWG said in a statement.

Yes, the people who lost the most, are compensated for that loss accordingly. Shame is misplaced in this case.

While smaller operations in farming, no, do not get the bigger dollar amounts, they are getting something.


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