Library of Congress Summary
The summary below was written by the Congressional Research Service, which is a nonpartisan division of the Library of Congress.
Rural Economic Farm and Ranch Sustainability and Hunger Act of 2011 or the REFRESH Act of 2011 - Amends the Food, Conservation, and Energy Act of 2008 to direct the Secretary of Agriculture (USDA), regarding all covered commodities and peanuts during each of the 2013-2017 crop years, to give the operator, tenant, or sharecropper on a farm an opportunity to make an annual election to receive aggregate risk and revenue management (ARRM) payments for the crop year for which the election is made.
(Replaces the average crop revenue election program with the ARRM program.) Repeals the direct and counter-cyclical payment programs for covered commodities and peanuts beginning with the 2013 crop year.
Suspends permanent price support authority through December 31, 2017.
Amends the Federal Crop Insurance Act to:
(1) authorize the Commodity Credit Corporation (CCC) to offer supplemental coverage based on an area yield and loss basis to cover that portion of a crop loss not covered under the producer's individual yield and loss basis insurance plan,
(2) require CCC to offer a whole farm insurance plan that allows a producer to qualify for an indemnity if actual gross farm revenue is below 80% of the producer's average gross farm revenue, and
(3) extend and expand the adjusted gross revenue insurance pilot program.
Amends the Federal Agriculture Improvement and Reform Act of 1996 to repeal the sugar loan program.
Eliminates tariffs on:
(1) raw sugar cane,
(2) beet sugar, and
(3) certain refined sugar.
Establishes through December 31, 2017:
(1) a dairy producer margin protection program, and
(2) a dairy market stabilization program.
Revises milk marketing order provisions.
(1) the dairy product and permanent milk price support programs,
(2) the milk income loss contract program, and
(3) the dairy export incentive program.
Amends the Food Security Act of 1985 to:
(1) extend and modify the conservation reserve program;
(2) eliminate the pilot program for enrollment of wetland and buffer acreage in the conservation reserve;
(3) establish an easement benefits program to protect land, wildlife, and water and to address conservation initiative issues; and
(4) establish in lieu of the environmental quality incentives program a working land program to promote agricultural production, forest management, and environmental quality.
(1) the conservation of private grazing land program,
(2) the grass roots source water protection program,
(3) the Great Lakes basin program for soil erosion and sediment control,
(4) the Chesapeake Bay watershed program,
(5) the voluntary public access and habitat incentive program, and
(6) the reservation of funds for the cooperative conservation partnership initiative.
Amends the Healthy Forests Restoration Act of 2003 to eliminate the healthy forests reserve program.
Amends the Food and Nutrition Act to revise the supplemental nutrition assistance program (SNAP, formerly the food stamp program).
(1) the Indian reservation food distribution program,
(2) pilot projects to evaluate health and nutrition promotion,
(3) healthy urban food enterprise development centers,
(4) the authorization of appropriations for Food and Nutrition Act programs,
(5) commodity purchase authority, and
(6) emergency food program infrastructure grants.
(1) the commodity distribution program,
(2) the commodity supplemental food program, and
(3) the surplus commodities to special nutrition projects program.
(1) the fresh fruits and vegetables for schools and service institutions program,
(2) the senior farmers' market nutrition program,
(3) the nutrition information and awareness program, and
(4) the hunger-free communities program.
Amends the Farm Security and Rural Investment Act of 2002 to:
(1) provide grants for the provision of biobased product information to organizations that have large procurement needs or vehicle fleets, or that produce products with which biobased products or biofuels can be integrated;
(2) provide for agreements with qualifying entities for energy efficiency loan demonstration projects;
(3) provide interest-free loans to eligible entities for loans to consumers to implement energy efficiency measures; and
(4) eliminate the feeedstock flexibility program for bioenergy producers.
(1) the rural energy for America program,
(2) the biomass crop assistance program, and
(3) the rural energy savings program.