A Brief History of the FSA
The FSA's relationship with farmers goes back 50 years, to the 1930's,
and the first agricultural acts establishing farm programs. Under the
unique method of local administration Congress set up at that time, farmers who
were eligible to participate in federal programs selected a three-person
county committee. This committee reviewed the county office operations and
made decisions about how the programs should be applied locally, giving farmers a say in
how the federal programs were run in their county. The committee made sure
that farmers received proper service and complete information. This
grassroots method of administration continues today.
Agricultural commodity programs are designed to improve the economic
stability of agriculture and help farmers adjust production to meet
demand. They accomplish this through acreage reductions and diversions. The goal is to avoid
severe price swings for farmers and consumers. Assistance is offered
through price support loans and purchases, as well as direct payments.
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