The South Dakota Farm Bureau has issued its support for the Livestock Disaster Protection Act introduced recently by U.S. Rep. Kristi Noem, R-S.D.

The Livestock Disaster Protection Act would extend the Livestock Indemnity Program (LIP), the Livestock Forage Program (LFP) and the Emergency Livestock Assistance Program (ELAP) authorized in the 2008 farm bill for five years, as well as retroactive coverage for fiscal years 2012 and 2013.

Scott VanderWal, president of the South Dakota Farm Bureau and a family farmer from Volga, said, “Livestock producers, like all of agriculture, face unique risks every day as they work to raise safe, healthy, affordable food. Farmers and ranchers can do everything right, and yet factors like weather can bring devastation to the animals in their care or to the crops or forage needed to feed them. Livestock producers deserve to have a dependable safety net in place to help face these production risks, and the Livestock Disaster Protection Act does just that. We urge the leaders in Congress to make sure this important protection is included in the new Farm Bill.”

“The risk our farmers, ranchers and all livestock owners in South Dakota take is undeniable,” said Noem.

“The extreme weather we see across America — from drought to flood to freezes to the extreme heat — demonstrates the importance of providing a strong safety net. My bill gives some long-term certainty to our livestock owners so they’ll keep on taking the risk to contribute to our state and nation’s robust agriculture industry.”

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