Waverly Ag Expo: Farmers talk subsidies and crop expectations - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

Waverly Ag Expo: Farmers talk subsidies and crop expectations

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WAVERLY (KWWL) More than 30 exhibitors celebrated all types of agriculture at an Ag Expo in Waverly.

"We're all in this together. One way or another we're agriculture related whether it's our job or the food we eat," said farmer Ron Leistikow from Readlyn.

Leistikow is trying to learn as much as he can about a new subsidy program. The USDA plans to start checking records of farmers to catch subsidy recipients making too much money. The program is expected to begin with subsidies for this year's corn crop.

Leistikow said it means more and more difficult paperwork for farmers.

"In fact, of all my years of farming, this is positively the most complicated program I've seen," said Leistikow.

According to the Bremer County Farm Bureau, farmers qualify for a variety of subsidies based on crops and livestock.

"It's an important safety net. There's a misconception that a lot of farmers are getting rich off subsidies, but in general subsidies are there to provide safe, affordable food to consumers," said Tim Dillon with the Bremer County Farm Bureau.

Dillon said the new program will impact each producer differently. But all farmers are thinking ahead to this year's crop.

Dillon said spring weather could have a major influence on crops planted. If nice weather continues, he personally expects more corn.

"But, if we would get three to four weeks of cool, rainy weather which Iowa's known to get in the spring, that can have a strong influence and we may see a strong number of beans because of that," said Dillon.

Ron Leistikow already bought his seed in the fall and is planning 80 percent corn and 20 percent beans.

Now, it's up to Mother Nature to see when farmers can get in the fields.

Reporter: Danielle Wagner

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