Which is better, direct payments to farmers or guaranteed prices?

Poll choices
Posted 6 months.


  • Betty - 6 months ago

    People NEVER value what they get for free. They MUST have some skin in the game.

  • Juan Diaz - 6 months ago

    Never give money to people who is not prepared to use it in a wise way or good plans.

  • George - 6 months ago

    Which is better: subsidies from a government known for corruption or guaranteed prices from a government known for corruption? As an expat, I really don’t know which would provide the greater benefit for the small farmer living in poverty.

  • Beda Angehrn - 6 months ago

    The poorest don't have land. The second poorest rent some land in exchange for a few days of labor and plant some crops for their families and livestock. They don't sell grain and will thus not benefit directly from guaranteed prices. To the contrary, if guaranteed prices work for their (a little) better off neighbors, food prices on the local market might even go up a bit. They might benefit if day labor demand goes up a bit. The CONASUPO guaranteed grain price scheme cost about 30 pesos for every peso that reached a poor farmer 25 years ago when it was ended. The rest went to people who "didn't need" it, according to the World Bank Group. But then again, this whole poll is misleading, because the question our dear politicians asked themselves was not "will it help the poorest" but "will it help us politically" and "will it look good" which is a wholly different matter. They didn't employ an agricultural economist to study the question, but probably needed to accommodate an important supporter somewhere in the bureaucracy.

  • Craig - 6 months ago

    Subsidies are legal plunder. Subsidising anyone will never require them to provide the best product for the best price. In fact it would allow a business to provide a lesser product at the same price. Now you have had your money taken twice. The first time when the business was subsidised with your tax dollars and now the second time when you have to buy their crappy product because through the subsidies that is your options.

  • Roger Kenyon - 6 months ago

    The problem with guaranteed prices is for delivery to a specified location. The problem for many campesinos is how to obtain the logistics required. Better to have the subsidy and sell product locally regardless. Otherwise the seller falls into the middleman trap. The solution is fine for larger farmers, but supposedly this does not apply to them (though I bet corners will be bent to qualify illegally).

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