An increase in base acres could pose several problems, researchers say

All proposals for the new Farm Bill include voluntary updates to base acres for operations with less base than planted acres. However, researchers warn there could be problems with those plans.

Economists at Ohio State and the University of Illinois point to three areas: the update window, max FSA farms, and problems with wealth creation. The House is proposing a five-year update window, which researchers say might be too short.

Instead, they suggest a six-year window to allow for more realistic rotations. For max FSA farms, they warn the update to base acres would likely not provide any benefits. When it comes to building wealth, they argue adding base acres could make it harder for new farmers because the land would be more expensive.

If there is a base acre update in the Farm Bill, it would be the third time in the last five Farm Bills.