HENDERSON, Ky. (WEHT) – Farmers across the country will soon be raking in a piece of a $14.5 billion bailout. The Trump Administration is dolling it out to farms hurt by the U.S. and China trade war.
American soybean farmers have been some of the hardest hit by Chinese retaliatory tariffs. To make up the difference, the government is writing checks. But not every farm is rolling in dough.
“It’s hurt the bottom line some,” said Henderson County farmer, Bob McIndoo.
He is expecting another Market Facilitation Program payment this year. The Federal government will begin distributing them across the country starting August 1.
“No farmer likes to have to do all that, we don’t like to have to get money from the government,” McIndoo said.
Henderson County Extension agent, Andy Rideout says the trade war has trickled down to mom and pop at home.
“You can argue politics all you want, but it really comes down to the heart of America,” Rideout added. “Agriculture, and it’s hitting them in the pocketbook.”
Rideout wonders how long a government subsidy can last, and only time will tell if the bailout works.
In the short term, most farms are going to rely on it to make ends meet, unless you’re a farmer who feels they’re on the short end of the stick.
“Most likely there will be some grumbles out there,” said Rideout.
According to the nonprofit Environmental Working Group, most of the government’s money is going to top-end farmers, leaving small farms without as big of a boost.
The Agriculture Department says the aid program is designed to support farms proportionate to its size and success.
Until the trade war ends, most soybean farmers will remain at the mercy of the market and China.
This story was originally published on July 31, 2019