Weekly Food & Agriculture Update 10.21
WEEKLY FOOD & AGRICULTURE UPDATE
October 21, 2019
A quick look at what’s happening in Washington, D.C. that’s impacting food and agriculture. If you would like to subscribe to the receive the updates right to your inbox, please contact Marissa Dake.
Big Picture Outlook
US and China Reach Limited Trade Deal– The United States and China have reached a “limited deal,” according to the two nations’ leaders, with the intent of signing an agreement in November. The agreement includes a significant increase in the purchase of US agricultural products, and the US has agreed to hold off on a tariff increase on $250 billion worth of Chinese imports which was scheduled for this month. Details of the agreement are still murky, and a formal announcement of the pact is yet to be released.
Appropriations Update– Congress is back in session with only a month to pass a number of appropriations bills before the November 21 federal funding deadline. Senate Majority leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) placed a number of FY20 spending bills on the Senate docket this week, including the Agriculture and Interior-Environment appropriations bills. Federal agencies are currently operating under a continuing resolution passed in September to avoid a government shutdown and extend government funding until later next month.
The Week Ahead
- The House Small Business Subcommittee on Rural Development, Agriculture, Trade, and Entrepreneurship meets for a field hearing on, “Harvesting the Digital Age: Connecting our Communities for a Better Future,” in Gettysburg, PA.
- The Food and Drug Administration hosts a public meeting on “A New Era of Smarter Food Safety”
- The House Agriculture Subcommittee on Conservation and Forestry will discuss, “Realizing the Conservation Benefits of Precision Agriculture”.
- The Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee will examine “Energy Efficiency Efforts in the United States and Internationally.”
- The Senate Environment and Public Works Committee holds a federal panel on methods of “Improving American Economic Competitiveness through Water Resources Infrastructure.”
MTA In Action
Michael Torrey presented a policy update to a group of dairy producers at the World Dairy Expo in Madison, Wisconsin. Torrey shared insights on trade, tariff aid, agricultural workforce issues, dairy labeling and school milk programs and gave media interviews at the Expo.
MTA Seeks Spring Intern
Michael Torrey Associates is seeking current students or recent graduates with an interest in agriculture policy for its internship program. The ideal intern will bring an enthusiasm for learning, strong work ethic, and excellent oral and written communication skills. This paid position will interact with the firm’s other team members to provide support on various legislative and communications projects. Click here for more information.
Left: Interns from across the food and agriculture sector at MTA’s Food & Ag Intern Ice Cream Social.
Right: Summer ’19 Intern Brooke Schafer with the MTA team at the Congressional Hunger Center’s 2019 Hunger Leadership Awards.
A Quick Look Back
- Trump Administration Proposes Plan to Raise U.S. Biofuels Use – EPA
- Edge Dairy Farmer Cooperative: USMCA: It’s Time to Get it Done for Farmers
- Democrats, Trump Administration Getting Closer on USMCA
- Uncertainty Clouds China’s Commitment to U.S. Farm Purchases
- After Trade Talks in U.S., China Ramps up Brazilian Soy Purchases
- USDA Refuses to Back Off on SNAP Eligibility Cut
- A Terrible Pandemic is Killing Pigs Around the World, and U.S. Pork Producers Fear They Could be Hit Next
- Once Nearly Extinct, Songbird Coming Off Endangered List