Weekly Food & Agriculture Update 6.28

Monday, June 28th, 2021

WEEKLY FOOD & AGRICULTURE UPDATE

June 28, 2021

The following newsletter will be in your inbox on July 12, after the Independence Day recess week.


Contents
  • Big Picture Outlook
  • The Week Ahead
  • A Quick Look Back
  • Contact the Team

Big Picture Outlook

House Agriculture Committee Hearing on Efficacy of Farm Safety NetOn June 23, the House Agriculture Subcommittee on General Farm Commodities and Risk Management held a hearing to review the efficacy of different Farm Safety Net programs implemented in the 2018 Farm bill as lawmakers begin to lay the groundwork for the 2023 Farm bill. The Full Committee Ranking Member GT Thompson (R-PA) outlined his guiding principles for disaster programs during this hearing – the program must complement rather than compete with crop insurance, it should be easy to implement, and it should be reliable and respond quickly to disaster events.

White House Announces Bipartisan Infrastructure AgreementOn June 24, President Biden announced a bipartisan agreement on a pared-down infrastructure plan. Led by Senators Rob Portman (R-OH) and Kyrsten Sinema (D-AZ), the bipartisan framework would include close to $600 billion in new spending on roads, bridges and other traditional infrastructure projects. However, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said that her chamber would not consider the bipartisan deal without assurances on the broader set of Democratic priorities, which Democrats will attempt to pass using the budget reconciliation procedure that avoids a Republican filibuster in the Senate. There remains a lot of work to do in drafting infrastructure legislation if it is to get additional bipartisan support and move through the Senate during the July work period.

Senate Approves Growing Climate Solutions Act The Senate passed the Growing Climate Solutions Act on June 24 with a vote of 92 to 8. This bill aims to create a certification program to help USDA solve technical entry barriers that prevent farmer and forest landowners from participating in the carbon credit market. The bill’s fate in the House remains uncertain, even after the vote of confidence in the Senate, as the House Agriculture Committee’s Ranking Member recently blasted the bill as “a big-government solution in search of a problem.

House Appropriations Subcommittee Approved Food & Ag Funding – Prioritizes Climate and Rural Broadband House Appropriations Agriculture Subcommittee members are proposing to steer new USDA funding into tackling climate change and expanding rural broadband service under a fiscal 2022 spending bill approved on Friday. The 2022 fiscal year bill would provide $347.4 million in climate-related funding, including research to track and mitigate climate change and measures to increase the use of carbon-saving farming practices and clean energy technologies. The bill also includes $907 million for rural broadband, a $115 million increase over the fiscal 2021 level. Most of the broadband funding, $800 million, goes into USDA’s ReConnect grant and loan program. While the bill didn’t receive any major amendments or changes at the subcommittee level, it could witness more activity during the House Appropriations Committee markup set for June 30.


The Week Ahead 

Tuesday, June 29

  • 10:00 AM EST: House Committee on Science, Space and Technology holds a hearing on the state of Federal Wildland Fire Science and opportunities for further research and coordination.
  • 10:30 AM EST: House Committee on Energy and Commerce holds a hearing on the CLEAN Future Act and electric transmission.

Wednesday, June 30

  • 10:00 AM EST: House Committee on Agriculture holds hearing on Supply Chain Recovery and Resiliency of Small Producers and Local Agricultural Markets.
  • 1:00 PM EST: House Committee on Appropriations Markup of FY2022 Agriculture, Rural Development, Food and Drug Administration, and Related Agencies and Military Construction, Veterans Affairs, and Related Agencies Appropriations Bills.

 

To see a full list of House and Senate Committee business, visit here.


A Quick Look Back 

“USDA’s ERS Tracks and Quantifies Bee Pollination”  ERS, USDA

“U.S. Corn, Soybean Crop Ratings Decline” Brownfield

“U.S. Plains Farmers Bet on Sorghum as Chinese Demand Lifts Prices” Ag Web

“Supreme Court Setback for Biofuel Producers” Farm Policy News

“Report Lays Out Crucial Components for Successful Rural Broadband Efforts” Pew

“SCOTUS Limits Farm Union Recruiting in favor of Property Rights” Cal Matters

“Carbon Markets Galore” Successful Farming

“Supreme Court Overturns Limits on Ethanol Blending Exemptions” Politico

“U.S. and Taiwan to Resume Formal Trade Discussions” Taiwan News

“If Prices Keep Falling, Farmers Urged To Lock In A Floor, Analyst Says” Successful Farming


Contact the Team 

Feel free to contact Michael TorreyTara Smith, Danielle Nelson, Cassandra KuballJames Glueck, Jessica KuneyBarbara Patterson, Trey Forsyth, Perry Harlow, or Brandon Barnett with any questions or comments.