Farm Bill Cheat Sheet

As we speak, this year’s—perhaps this decade’s—most important piece of food legislation is getting thrown around Washington, DC like a government-subsidized hot potato. The 2007 Farm Bill will affect more than farms: As Michael Pollan eloquently pointed out in the New York Times last week, the bill influences political, environmental, economical and public health issues around the globe.

While we can’t vote on the bill ourselves, we vote for the folks who will vote on it, so it pays to educate ourselves on what’s at stake. Here’s a good start:

• The USDA’s 2007 Farm Bill Web site lists all of the bill’s proposals, with regular updates.
• The Washington Post has conducted a year-long investigation on the bill.
• The excellent environmental Web site Grist has published a series of opinionated columns on the bill’s impact.
• The Farm and Food Policy Project, an alliance of various agriculture, environmental and public health organizations, has created their own model for farm policy.

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