The 2015 Texas Ag Forum scheduled Feb. 20 at the Hilton Austin Airport will provide producers with the most up-to-date information possible about farm bill sign-up decisions, according to organizers.

The 2014 farm bill introduced two new safety net programs: Price Loss Coverage, which offsets price shortfalls, and Agricultural Risk Coverage, which addresses revenue declines. Farmers have until March 31 to decide which of those two programs is best for their operation, said Dr. Joe Outlaw, co-director of the Agricultural and Food Policy Center at Texas A&M University and Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service economist.

“We decided to hold the 2015 Texas Ag Forum in late February to get as close to the sign-up deadline as practical,” Outlaw said. “We hope to provide producers with the most up-to-date information available.”

The forum will feature presentations from policy makers, university experts and farm group representatives. The 2014 farm bill programs will be discussed as well as web-based decision aids developed by the National Association for Agriculture and Food Policy – a coalition co-led by the Agricultural and Food Policy Center at Texas A&M University and the Food and Agriculture Policy Research Institute at the University of Missouri-Columbia.

The decision aids were developed under a Farm Service Agency grant to assist farmers in making farm bill sign-up decisions and updating payment yields and reallocating base acres. The National Association for Agriculture and Food Policy decision aids can be accessed at https://usda.afpc.tamu.edu .

Advanced registration for the forum is $125 through the Texas Agricultural Cooperative Council, 1210 San Antonio St., Suite 101, Austin, Texas 78701.

To register, call 512-450-0555 and ask for Gloria Johnson. Same day registration is $150. Seating is limited. Lunch and breaks will be provided.

The Texas Ag Forum is as an association of agricultural leaders and representatives from across the Texas food and fiber system. It was founded more than 20 years ago to provide a forum for open and public discussion of the problems and emerging issues in agriculture. It is a stakeholder-driven program in partnership with AgriLife Extension.