Under the false pretense of helping “actual farmers,” the Environmental Working Group (EWG) appeared on the May 3rd episode of 60 Minutes to stab actual farmers in the back by misrepresenting who benefits from farm aid.
The EWG has proven once again how low it will stoop to carry out its ideological vendetta against American farm and ranch families who feed, clothe, and fuel this nation in a manner that is unrivaled in history.
This latest tin-eared stunt by the EWG comes at a time when farmers, ranchers, and dairy producers have been declared critical infrastructure by the U.S. government and expected to continue working to ensure the food chain is not interrupted – even though they know when they go into their fields, pastures, and dairy parlors that they will lose money on what they are producing, while risking their own personal health and potentially the economic viability of their operations.
Due to the effect of COVID-19, actual farmer and rancher debt levels are nearing the all-time highs reached during the 1980s farm financial crisis and agricultural receipts are expected to nosedive by $32 billion this year from their already depressed levels – with net income from dairy and cattle down by 58 percent and crop producers’ ending cash down 62 percent.
If the EWG had its way, any farmer or rancher with $1 million or more in gross receipts would be excluded from help. Remember, this $1 million is before expenses are paid, which means the farmer could still be deep in the red – and almost certainly is right now. Make no mistake, the EWG is targeting real, dirt-under-the-fingernails, full-time farm and ranch families who actually make their living off the farm or ranch.
Under the EWG’s approach, nearly half of our nation’s agricultural production – including 69 percent of all the dairy production and over 62 percent of high-value crops like fruits and vegetables – would be ineligible for help in the face of desperate economic conditions that are forcing producers to dump their milk, depopulate their herds, and plough under their crops because there are no other options.
Perhaps the EWG’s latest reckless move is why the Chairman of the House Agriculture Committee Collin Peterson has previously stated that the “EWG has no credibility.”
We have fact checked EWG’s false rhetoric time and time again at Farm Policy Facts.
But rather than spend more ink exposing the discredited EWG’s ideological agenda, we’ll just share with you a best of – or rather, worst of – compilation of some of EWG’s more egregious attacks on farmers and ranchers and the farm policies that support them:
- EWG Recklessly Ignoring the Facts
- EWG’s ‘New’ Database Used For Same, Old Purpose: To Attack Farmers
- They’re Baaaack…and They’re Still Wrong
- Common-Sense Lessons for Critics of American Agriculture
- Will Anything Ever Satisfy Farm Critics? No.
And of course, we can’t forget this Capitol Hill takedown of EWG and their dishonest tactics.
Thank you to the Administration and bipartisan members of Congress who have worked hard to provide farmers and ranchers with the aid they need to survive trade conflicts and the global pandemic despite these misguided attacks on their good work.
Actual farmers and ranchers across the heartland are in desperate need of relief.