Senate Ag Committee Urges T-TIP

Kelly Marshall Leave a Comment

The 13th round of Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (T-TIP) beings today in New York. In preparation for the new round of talks U.S. Senator Pat Roberts (R-KS), Chairman of the U.S. Senate Agriculture, Nutrition, and Forestry Committee, along with 26 other Senators, set a letter to the U.S. Trade Representative, Michael Forman, to ask for a strong framework for …

Exports, Government, Trade

AFBF Hosts Webcast On Labor Visa Backlogs

Lizzy Schultz Leave a Comment

Delays from the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) and the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) in the processing of visas for farm workers are fast approaching crisis proportions, increasing the threat that crops will rot in the field on many farms this year, American Farm Bureau Federation (AFBF) President Zippy Duvall said in a media conference call this week. …

AFBF, Ag Group, Farm Bureau, Farm Policy, Farming, Government, labor

Vilsack Traveling to Japan, Vietnam

Kelly Marshall Leave a Comment

Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack has made plans to attend the G7 Agriculture Ministers Meeting in Niigata, Japan.  Following the meeting he will then travel to Vietnam to highlight the agricultural relationship between the two countries and point out the importance of the Trans-Pacific Partnership to the each as well. At the G7 meeting, Vilsack and other participating ministers will discuss …

Exports, Government, TPP, Trade, USDA

Senators Pleased EPA IG to Investigate Anti-Ag Billboards

Cindy Zimmerman Leave a Comment

Senators Pat Roberts (R-KS) and Jim Inhofe (R-OK) are pleased that Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is taking action regarding a taxpayer funded, anti-farmer campaign in Washington state. The chairmen of the Senate agriculture and environment committees sent a letter to EPA’s inspector general earlier this month requesting an audit and investigation of an EPA grant to the Northwest Indian Fisheries …

Environment, EPA, Government

Extension Services Keep Farmers Farming

Kelly Marshall Leave a Comment

The purpose of the federal cooperative extension program was to provide research for agriculture, helping individual farmers by serving the industry as a whole.  Now a new study from Penn State University has taken a look at the effectiveness of those programs. Stephan Goetz writes in his paper that an estimated 137,000 farmers in the last 25 years would be …

Agribusiness, Government

Farmers Face Financial Pressure, AFBF Tells Congress

Kelly Marshall

The continued commodity price slump is hurting American farmers and Zippy Duvall is trying to make sure Congress understand just what that means to agriculture.  The American Farm Bureau Federation President (AFBF) explained to the Agriculture Subcommittee that, while all farmers and ranchers will be affected, new and young farmers will struggle most as they work to build equity, write …

AFBF, Ag Group, Government

USDA Offers Grants for Value-Added Products

Kelly Marshall

The Value-Added Producer Grant program is gaining $44 million to help farmers, ranchers and businesses develop bio-based products and expand existing markets.  The USDA made the announcement just last week, and hope to help with grants to veterans, members of socially disadvantaged groups, beginning farmers and ranchers, and operators of small and medium sized family farms and ranches. “America’s farmers, …

Government, USDA

Washington State Billboard Causing Uproar

Cindy Zimmerman

The chairmen of two Senate committees are calling for an investigation into billboards in Washington state that blame agriculture for polluting waterways because they apparently were funded by a grant from the Environmental Protection Agency. Sen. Jim Inhofe (R-OK), chairman of the Environment and Public Works Committee, and Sen. Pat Roberts (R-KS), chairman of the Agriculture Committee are requesting an …

Environment, EPA, Government

USDA Offers $90 Million in Competitive Grants

Kelly Marshall

The USDA will be making $90 million in competitive grants available to strengthen local food systems, develop market opportunities and support growers specialty crops. The grants will be run through the Agricultural Marketing Service (AMS) and the Specialty Crop Block Grant Program, the Farmers Market and Local Food Promotion Program, and the Federal-State Marketing Improvement Program. “Over the past seven years, USDA …

Government, Local, specialty crops, USDA