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Land-retirement payments to family farms with sales less than $10,000 nearly doubled between 1991 and 2009

Land-retirement payments to family farms with sales less than $10,000 nearly doubled between 1991 and 2009
While commodity payments have shifted towards farms with more sales, the situation is different for land-retirement payments, which target environmentally sensitive land and largely come from the Conservation Reserve Program. From 1991 to 2009, family farms with sales less than $10,000 (noncommercial farms) nearly doubled their share of land-retirement payments from 16 percent to 30 percent. Over the same period, the average share of acreage enrolled--the ratio of the acres enrolled to total acres operated--increased from 36 percent to 46 percent for participating noncommercial farms. These increases could be attributed to small farms shifting into the noncommercial class following a substantial land retirement and/or older farmers with small commer­cial farms scaling their operations down by enrolling in the CRP. This chart comes from Changing Farm Structure and the Distribution of Farm Payments and Federal Crop Insurance, EIB-91, February 2012.

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Last updated: Tuesday, October 09, 2012

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