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Agricultural Subsidies Pros and Cons List

It is not entirely true that farmers are the poorest citizens of a country but they are certainly among the hardest working people without getting their due. They are underpaid compared to the inflated salaries that some other professions offer. Not all farmers are tech savvy or highly educated to make the most of their farms.

The farming methods and knowledge passed down in the family aside, there has to be some serious investment in the farm, the testing of the soil, the farming methods including the equipment needed, the sowing and fertilizing, maintaining the crop and harvesting, storing or processing and selling the produce. Agricultural subsidies are necessary in most countries of the world but there are advantages and disadvantages. Let us check out the agricultural subsidies pros and cons.

List of Pros of Agricultural Subsidies

1. Growth of Agricultural Produce and GDP, Reduced Imports
Agricultural subsidies help farmers to produce more and to do so consistently every season. This leads to a higher agricultural output of the country, hence impacting the GDP. The national income of the country will increase and it would also reduce the dependence on agricultural imports. Less reliance on imports and self sustenance is always a good way forward. A country that is able to feed its own and has some more to export is always better than one that doesn’t grow enough. Agricultural subsidies are a step to ensure enough and ideally more than sufficient production of all types of foods.

2. Necessary Aid for Farmers
Agricultural subsidies are necessary to fund the technology, equipment and also processes that farmers should use. Not every farmer can buy a piece of equipment necessary or make a switch to better technology. A little help from the government will provide the much needed fillip to the farmer. Subsidies also pertain to fertilizers and other goods necessary for agriculture.

3. Promoting Agriculture and Farming
Agricultural subsidies work as incentives. Many people have moved away from farming in the last hundred years. Reducing count of farmers should worry any country and there must be steps to encourage more people to get into farming. Without incentives or some kind of help, a profession or means of livelihood like farming and agriculture cannot be promoted.

List of Cons of Agricultural Subsidies

1. Financial Burden
Agricultural subsidies are a fiscal burden and they can prove to be costly should the returns be unrewarding. Such schemes are a path to becoming a welfare state, if unchecked.

2. Government Intervention & Manipulation
Government intervention should be the least it can be in any industry. Favoring one industry or profession doesn’t augur well for the society or country as a whole. It also leads to government initiated manipulations of the market.

3. Discriminatory and lacking Inclusivity
The agricultural subsidies may be discriminatory. Some farmers may get neglected and some foods or type of foods may get ignored.