Waco, TX – Texas Farmers Union is urging Congress to take immediate steps to address the unprecedented increases in fuel prices. The extraordinary prices of gasoline, diesel fuel, natural gas and petroleum derived input products such as fertilizer, chemicals and propane are adding yet another economic burden to rural America.
“We need stable and reasonable prices to complete daily farm operations, especially during the harvest season,” said TFU President Wes Sims. Congress should initiate investigations into the possibility of price gouging, price fixing and fraud regarding the extreme volatility at the wholesale and retail levels.
Agricultural producers are among the largest seasonal fuel consumers in the United States and face significantly increased operating expenses due to the inflated cost of petroleum products. Unlike many other businesses, farmers and ranchers cannot pass along increased production costs, because they do not set the prices for their commodities.
Even before the most recent energy cost increases, the U.S. Department of Agriculture estimated high energy costs had already impacted net farm income by over $2 billion. That estimate was before the skyrocketing increases of the past few months.
“In the midst of these increased costs, farmers are facing the threat of agriculture budget cuts – cuts to many of the programs that provide a safety net for farmers,” said Sims. “We need our representatives in Washington to take action and alleviate this burden on Texas’ producers.”
|Texas Farmers Union, P.O. Box 738, Sweetwater, Tx 79556|