President Donald Trump signed the 2018 Farm Bill into law Thursday, a move that drew praise from numerous public officials and farm groups.
The bill passed both the Senate and House just days after a conference report was released Dec. 10. Highlights of the bill include the removal of industrial hemp from the controlled substances list, expansion of the Conservation Reserve Program and reforms to the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program — though not as severe as reforms originally proposed by the House.
Kansas Sen. Pat Roberts serves as chairman of the Senate Agriculture Committee and was one of the major players who crafted the bill. The bill passed the Senate by the largest margin of any Farm Bill, with an 87-13 vote.
“Our first commitment was to provide farmers and ranchers with certainty and predictability and this is what attracted broad, bipartisan support,” Roberts said in a release. “I am proud of the members of my committee who have worked so hard to give rural America the tools to produce the safest and most affordable food and fiber in the world.”
Roberts said he was glad to have the support of the president and vice president.
Passage of the Farm Bill will ensure that conservation, market assistance and SNAP programs, among others, stay up to date and working.
Groups such as Kansas Corn and National Sorghum Producers applauded the signing of the Farm Bill as well.
"Today's signing is a culmination of hard work, commitment and intelligent planning by Congress to get the bill across the finish line before the end of the year,” said Dan Atkisson, Stockton, Kansas farmer and chairman of NSP. “We know this bill invests in the future of agriculture and NSP would like to thank the Administration as well as the leaders of the House and Senate Agriculture Committees and their staffs for their leadership.”