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When Tobacco Was KingFamilies, Farm Labor, and Federal Policy in the Piedmont$
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Evan P. Bennett

Print publication date: 2014

Print ISBN-13: 9780813060149

Published to Florida Scholarship Online: January 2015

DOI: 10.5744/florida/9780813060149.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM FLORIDA SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.florida.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright University Press of Florida, 2020. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in FLASO for personal use.date: 01 June 2020



(p.75) 5 Stabilization
When Tobacco Was King

Evan P. Bennett

University Press of Florida

This chapter argues that the Federal Tobacco Program provided the higher prices tobacco farm families had long sought, but failed to deliver the stability they hoped these would provide. Its primary weakness was its dependence on across-the-board acreage reductions to keep production in line with demand which effectively undermined the small fam families it had been designed to protect. By the 1960s, thousands of small farm families had been forced to take work off farms in order to subsidize their incomes or quit farming tobacco altogether. Despite this, they clung ever tighter to the Federal Tobacco Program—voting to continue its controls via referenda—because of its predictability and the protections it offered from the increasing demands of tobacco manufacturers made regarding cultural practices in the fields.

Keywords:   Tobacco, Federal Tobacco Program, Tobacco farms

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