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Oregonian features opinion column by Linfield economics professor

Professor Eric Schuck told Oregonian readers that farmers, consumers and the environment will suffer without passage of an important agricultural bill.

“Congress needs to pass the farm bill, or learn to farm like it’s 1949,” Schuck says.

On Sept. 30, the Food, Conservation and Energy Act of 2008 expires, and Congress hasn’t yet passed a replacement.

Congress must pass the replacement farm bill, Schuck says, or revert to an earlier 1949 act, which would be both absurdly expensive and exceptionally narrow.

“If the 1949 programs go back into force, crop prices may balloon while simultaneously making farm incomes less stable,” he says. “Damage would also extend to consumers and the environment.”

Schuck teaches economics at Linfield College. He is the recipient of two Fulbright fellowships, in the Middle East and Africa, to teach or develop curriculum about water resource management.