Last year's revenue program largely was based on planted acres while last year's target price program made payments on historical base acres. Generally, risk management is enhanced by basing payments on planted acres.

To some extent, the answer to this question is related to whether the program will react to market conditions. If a program reacts to market conditions, it can more easily be based on planted acres. Fixed target prices raise concerns when a fixed target price is set high relative to the market price. This will cause producers to plant more of the crops with higher fixed target prices, especially if payments are based on planted acres or if planted acres are significantly smaller than base acres. Hence, historical bases, especially historical bases that are updated close to the time that fixed target prices are set, have to be used when the program does not react to the market, or else production distortions become potentially more important.