12:49pm

Fri January 31, 2014
Politics

Proposed Ag Bill Has Tenn Livestock Producers Worried

WASHINGTON (AP) — Bi-partisan support in the Senate is expected to overcome liberal as well as conservative criticism of a massive five-year farm bill that spends nearly $100 billion a year on food stamps and crop subsidies.

The chairwoman of the Senate Agriculture Committee, Democrat Debbie Stabenow of Michigan, says she has no doubt senators will approve the measure.

Dr. Warren Gill is the Dean of the Agri-Science program at Middle Tennessee State says the bill is mostly good news for Tennessee farmers, especially dairy operations. But he says new regulations on meat labeling have livesto ck producers worried.

“And a lot of that expense that isn’t covered by the bill will be covered by the processors of the meat products and the price that farmers get for their livestock.”

After years of setbacks, the farm bill cleared its biggest hurdle Wednesday when the House approved it 251-to-166.

The final bill made significant cuts to the to food stamp program, which is always included in the farm legislation.