CORN: AMERICA’S CROP
Corn is the most abundant crop produced in the United States. In 2022, U.S. corn farmers planted 88.6 million acres of corn, producing over 13.7 billion bushels with an estimated value of $90.6 billion. The USDA March Prospective Planting Report indicates farmers intend to plant 92 million acres of corn in 2023.
Each year, corn growers make planting decisions based on markets, growing conditions, and risk calculations. Growers know firsthand the high-risk nature of the business of agriculture, as they face challenges with natural disasters and unexpected market volatility and disruptions. The farm bill plays a critical role in helping growers navigate risks outside of their control.
Corn growers are invested in developing forward-looking, market-orientated farm policies. NCGA’s farm bill recommendations seek to make existing USDA programs more effective, efficient, and responsive through strategic investments and policy enhancements that will protect and bolster America’s Crop.
See the full Farm Bill Priority Paper.
NCGA, corn state associations, and grower members are working closely to ensure the next farm bill addresses the needs of corn growers. NCGA supports a bipartisan, comprehensive agriculture and nutrition reauthorization ahead of expiration on September 30, 2023.
Protect Crop Insurance
• Federal crop insurance provides market-oriented risk management tools for growers to respond to yield and revenue losses.
• In the crop insurance title, NCGA:
o Opposes efforts to restrict producer access to crop insurance products and harmful program cuts.
o Supports increasing the affordability of crop insurance for producers.
Bolster U.S. International Market Development
• USDA trade programs boost U.S. agricultural exports and help agriculture and related businesses in rural America.
• In the trade title, NCGA supports:
o Increasing Market Access Program (MAP) funding from $200 million up to $400 million annually and
Foreign Market Development (FMD) program funding from $34.5 million up to $69 million annually.
Strengthen the Producer Safety Net
• Corn growers support improvements to strengthen the Agriculture Risk Coverage (ARC) and Price Loss Coverage (PLC) commodity programs.
• In the commodity title, NCGA supports:
o Increasing the ARC County maximum payment rate above 10 percent.
o Increasing the ARC County coverage level above 86 percent.
o Strengthening the PLC effective reference price “escalator.”
• NCGA opposes lowering payment limits and adjusted gross income limits below current
Support Voluntary Conservation Programs
• U.S. corn farmers are committed to conservation and their role as stewards of the land. USDA
conservation programming plays an important role in helping advance the adoption of climate-smart agricultural practices.
• In the conservation title, NCGA supports:
o Creating a USDA initiative to use conservation programming to reduce development of weed
resistance to protect viability of conservation tillage and cover cropping practices.
o Creating a USDA NRCS grant program to cover total costs of retaining a full-time coordinator for farmer- led collaborative watershed projects to reduce nutrient losses.
o Expanding and strengthening NRCS’ Interim Conservation Practice Standards initiative to speed the development and adoption of innovative conservation practices.
In addition to the priorities above, the Farm Bill includes programs important to corn growers
including agricultural arch, rural broadband, energy, and the biobased economy.