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Is the Family Farm About to be Outlawed by New Labor Regulations?

April 16, 2012
Gary DeMar, Godfather Politics

The family farm is in jeopardy. New Department of Labor (DOL) regulations could make it more expensive for family farms to survive. Traditionally, farms were productive and efficient because the entire family worked from before the time sun rose to when it set. As a result, the United States became the bread basket of the world, producing more food than it could consume.

The total number of farms in the United States in 2010 is estimated to be 2.2 million and most of them are family owned. Not all farms are created equal:

The “Corporate” farms account for only 3% of U.S. farms and 90% of those are family owned. However, the term “family farm” does not necessarily equate with “small farm”; nor does a “corporate farm” necessarily mean a large-scale operation owned and operated by a multi-national corporation. Many of the country’s largest agricultural enterprises are family owned. Likewise, many farm families have formed modest-sized corporations to take advantage of legal and accounting benefits of that type of business enterprise.

DOL Secretary Hilda Solis has proposed new rules that would restrict family farm operations by prohibiting anyone under the age of 18 from being near certain age animals without adult supervision. Many family farms hire young people from the local community. Their parents want them to learn farming skills. The goal for many families is to keep farms in the family.

And now… the rest of the story. …..

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