Soil Conservation and Crop Surpluses

February 3, 1960

Report Outline
Soil Conservation Plans and Purposes
Rise of Soil Conservation Movement
Future of Soil Conservation Programs

Soil Conservation Plans and Purposes

Crop Surplus Question in Political Campaign

Endless discussion about how to solve the problem of mounting crop surpluses and declining farm prices will mark the coming election campaign. Whether it will lead to adoption of a farm program likely to ease pressures on either the farmer or the taxpayer is another matter. President Eisenhower said in his budget message for the fiscal year 1961, transmitted to Congress on Jan. 18, that “Federal programs for agriculture will again have a heavy impact on the budget, primarily because of continued high agricultural production and the past unwillingness of the Congress to make the adjustments in production needed to permit relaxation of government controls over farm operations.”

Secretary of Agriculture Ezra Taft Benson said on the TV-radio program Meet the Press on Jan, 17 that it was “rather tragic the way we have permitted these surpluses to accumulate at great cost to the taxpayer.” At Ithaca, N.Y., last March 24 Benson had called the present farm program “the most costly, irrational, hodge-podge program ever patched together.” Democrats, on the other hand, accuse the Secretary of having administered the program improperly.

Each party thus tries to saddle on the other the responsibility for failure to curtail agricultural surpluses. The value of surplus crops held in storage under price-support operations is expected to reach the unprecedented total of $10 billion in 1960.

ISSUE TRACKER for Related Reports
Soil Conservation
Mar. 23, 1984  Soil Erosion: Threat to Food Supply
Feb. 03, 1960  Soil Conservation and Crop Surpluses
Jul. 12, 1954  Wind Erosion
Jan. 27, 1936  Soil Conservation and Agricultural Adjustment
Farm Produce and Commodities
Soil and Watershed Conservation