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Farm Bill Stinks for the Meat Industry, and That's Not Entirely Bad

An Angus cow in Winchester, Ky.
An Angus cow in Winchester, Ky.Photograph by Luke Sharrett/Bloomberg

When all the spoils were divvied up in the farm bill that passed the House of Representatives this week, the meat industry was generally considered a loser. But there is some consolation buried in the legislation, not so much a silver lining as a clay one—filled with manure.

The new bill lifts the limit on how much a farmer can receive from what’s known as the Environmental Quality Incentives Program (EQIP), to $450,000 from $300,000. EQIP was created in 1996 to encourage growers to adapt better conservation practices, such as planting cover crops to prevent erosion or installing fences for rotational grazing.