A statement from David Cleavinger, president of the National Association of Wheat Growers and a wheat producer from Wildorado, TX; Bob Dickey, president of the National Corn Growers Association and a corn producer from Laurel, NE; Toby Bostwick, chairman of the board of the National Sorghum Producers and a sorghum producer from Melrose, NM; and Johnny Dodson, president of the American Soybean Association and a soybean producer from Halls, TN.

“As the leaders of participant organizations at the 2009 Commodity Classic, which represent almost 90% of our nation's crop area planted, we would like to take this opportunity to reiterate the importance of the farm safety net as written in the 2008 Farm Bill.

“The small investment in agricultural programs by the federal government provides an excellent return for the American people. The 2008 Farm Bill also includes many other reforms that will assist farmers in becoming more financially sound.

“Production agriculture is a volatile business, and a workable farm safety net is vital to the security of our industry. The continued production of an abundant, affordable and safe food and feed supply for Americans and all those we export to around the world will be affected if this safety net is changed. The purpose of a five-year farm bill is to provide stability to producers, agricultural operations and the food system. The 2008 bill should not be reopened before it expires in 2012.

“Our organizations look forward to continued work with the Obama Administration and Congress to ensure farm program monies are spent wisely.”