Washington Post: Raisin farmers appear poised to win challenge of New Deal-era program

by Michael Goard, Sustainable Plant Systems – Landscape Design and Management major

While reading this article about the struggle raisin farmers are having during their extensive trial against an agriculture regulation that is far out of date, I found myself wondering if there would have been a better way for these farmers to change the program that they are against. There is a program that requires that the government be given a percentage of the nation’s raisin crop as part of a plan to stabilize higher prices. When this program was put in place raisins were a chief crop in the nation’s market, but since they have fallen by the wayside, farmers feel that having some of their crop taken without compensation if an unfair government action. While I agree that farmers should be allowed to keep their entire crop for their own market benefit, I also feel the farmers should have talked to someone about changing the program of old, to better suit the raisin farmers of today.

In the past these regulations were necessary for price regulation and the better price was the compensation the government offered, but since the raisin market is much lower, the government should offer either to compensate the farmers with currency or allow them to keep the crop to sell on their own. This could offer a better compromise between government and farmer, where both sides are happy with the outcome.

Read more
> Washington Post

Updated news story (06/2015)
Modern Farmer: Raisin Grower Wins Supreme Court Battle

This blog post was an assignment for Societal Issues: Pesticides, Alternatives and the Environment (PLNTPTH 4597). The views expressed are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of the class, Department of Plant Pathology or the instructor.

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