Agricultural policies (1 - 10 of 43 items)
Genetically Engineered Crops: USDA Needs to Enhance Oversight and Better Understand Impacts of Unintended Mixing with Other Crops
GAO-16-241: Published: Mar 15, 2016. Publicly Released: Apr 14, 2016.
The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), Food and Drug Administration (FDA), and U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA), have taken steps to regulate genetically-engineered (GE) crops (i.e., crops whose genetic makeup has been modified), but USDA has not updated its regulations to oversee GE crops derived from alternative technologies in which the GE crop developed contains no plant pest DNA. EPA...
Crop Insurance: Considerations in Reducing Federal Premium Subsidies
GAO-14-700: Published: Aug 8, 2014. Publicly Released: Sep 8, 2014.
The cost of the federal crop insurance program and farm sector income and wealth grew significantly from 2003 through 2012. The cost of crop insurance averaged $3.4 billion a year from fiscal years 2003 through 2007, but it increased to $8.4 billion a year for fiscal years 2008 through 2012. According to the U.S. Department of Agriculture's (USDA) Risk Management Agency (RMA), the agency that admi...
Crop Insurance: Opportunities Exist to Reduce the Costs of Administering the Program
GAO-09-445: Published: Apr 29, 2009. Publicly Released: Jun 1, 2009.
The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) administers the federal crop insurance program with private insurance companies, which, in turn, work with insurance agencies that sell crop insurance. In 2008, according to USDA, the program cost $6.5 billion, including about $2.0 billion in allowances to insurance companies to cover their administrative and operating (A&O) expenses, such as salaries and...
Genetically Engineered Crops: Agencies Are Proposing Changes to Improve Oversight, but Could Take Additional Steps to Enhance Coordination and Monitoring
GAO-09-60: Published: Nov 5, 2008. Publicly Released: Dec 5, 2008.
Genetically engineered (GE) crops--including crops engineered to resist pests or tolerate herbicides--are widespread in the United States and around the world. Taking direction from the 1986 Coordinated Framework for Regulation of Biotechnology, the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA), Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), and Food and Drug Administration (FDA) regulate GE crops to ensure that...
Beginning Farmers: Additional Steps Needed to Demonstrate the Effectiveness of USDA Assistance
GAO-07-1130: Published: Sep 18, 2007. Publicly Released: Oct 18, 2007.
U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) programs have long supported beginning farmers. USDA generally defines a beginning farmer or rancher as one who has operated a farm or ranch for 10 years or less--without regard for age--and who materially and substantially participates in its operation. USDA's Farm Service Agency (FSA) makes and guarantees loans for farmers who cannot obtain commercial credit...
Agriculture Production: USDA Needs to Build on 2005 Experience to Minimize the Effects of Asian Soybean Rust in the Future
GAO-06-337: Published: Feb 24, 2006. Publicly Released: Mar 21, 2006.
In 2005, U.S. agriculture faced potentially devastating losses from Asian Soybean Rust (ASR), a fungal disease that spreads airborne spores. Fungicides approved by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) can protect against ASR. In 2005, growers in 31 states planted about 72.2 million soybean acres worth about $17 billion. While favorable weather conditions limited losses due to ASR, it still th...
Agriculture Production: USDA's Preparation for Asian Soybean Rust
GAO-05-668R: Published: May 17, 2005. Publicly Released: May 20, 2005.
In November 2004, Asian Soybean Rust (ASR) was discovered in the United States in Louisiana. In the following weeks, it was found in eight additional southern states. ASR is a harmful fungal disease that has spread throughout many other parts of the world, including Asia, Australia, Africa, and South America. ASR can infect over 90 host plant species, including legumes, such as dry beans, peas, an...
RCED-95-264R: Published: Aug 28, 1995. Publicly Released: Aug 28, 1995.
GAO provided information on the distribution of deficiency payments under the Department of Agriculture's income support program during crop year 1993. GAO noted that: (1) about 1.1 million individuals received payments under their own name or through entities, general partnerships, or joint ventures; (2) the average deficiency payment varied from one commodity to another; (3) 76 percent of these...
Farm Programs: Distribution of USDA Income Support Payments
T-RCED-95-133: Published: Mar 16, 1995. Publicly Released: Mar 16, 1995.
GAO discussed the distribution of the Department of Agriculture's income support payments for crop year 1993, focusing on the: (1) value of these payments; and (2) extent to which these payments may be concentrated among relatively few farms. GAO noted that: (1) payments to individual farms ranged from less than $100 to almost $1.8 million; (2) approximately 75 percent of the 989,000 farms receive...
U.S. Agriculture: Status of the Farm Sector
RCED-95-104FS: Published: Mar 3, 1995. Publicly Released: Mar 3, 1995.
GAO provided information on the condition of the U.S. farm sector, focusing on: (1) agriculture's position in the U.S. economy; (2) the level of U.S. agricultural outputs and inputs; (3) the condition of the agricultural resource base; and (4) the federal government's financial support of agricultural producers.GAO found that: (1) the farm sector's share of the nation's gross domestic product decl...