"The new farm bill, which had been mired in partisan gridlock, makes fundamental changes to both nutrition and farm programs. It cuts the food stamp program by $8 billion, and about 850,000 households will lose about $90 in monthly benefits under the change. (Let them eat cake.)
Anti-hunger groups called the food stamp cuts draconian. Feeding America, a coalition of food banks across the county, said the change would result in 34 lost meals per month for the affected households.
The bill does provide a $200 million increase in financing to food banks, though many said the money might not be enough to offset the expected surge in demand for food.
Farm programs were not spared from the cuts in the new bill. The most significant change to farm programs is the elimination of a subsidy known as direct payments. These payments, about $5 billion a year, are paid to farmers whether or not they grow crops, and the issue had become politically toxic over the last several years as farm income has risen to record levels.
The new bill cuts this subsidy and adds some of the money to the government-subsidized crop insurance. The government pays 62 percent of premiums for the $9 billion-a-year insurance program." NYT 30 jan 2014