Weekly Food and Agriculture Update – 6.6

June 6, 2022


Contents

  • Big Picture Outlook
  • Thoughts from Team Torrey
  • The Week Ahead
  • A Quick Look Back

Big Picture Outlook

EPA Released Blending Requirements

On Friday, the EPA released mandates for the volume of biofuels oil refiners are obligated to blend for 2020, 2021, and 2022. The final rule keeps intact the agency’s effort to end the Trump administration’s use of small refinery exemptions to release some facilities from the program’s blending requirements. The total renewable fuel volume requirements for 2020, 2021, and 2022 are 17.13, 18.84, and 20.63 billion gallons respectively. EPA was obligated to finalize its rulemaking by last Friday under a court-approved deal struck earlier this year.

Farm Bill

The Senate Committee on Agriculture, Nutrition, and Forestry announced a field hearing in Arkansas to gain input from state agricultural producers as the process of writing the 2023 Farm Bill begins. The hearing will take place on Friday, June 17th and witnesses will include Arkansas agricultural producers, industry stakeholders, and rural community supporters.

U.S. – Taiwan Trade Initiative 

Last week, the Biden administration announced the launch of the U.S.-Taiwan Initiative on 21st Century Trade. The initiative is intended to develop concrete ways to deepen the economic and trade relationship, advance mutual trade priorities, and promote innovation and inclusive economic growth for workers and businesses. As a part of the negotiations to reach high-standard commitments and economically meaningful outcomes, the two sides will explore provisions to facilitate agricultural trade through science and risk-based decision making and through the adoption of sound, transparent regulatory practices.

WOTUS Roundtable

Last Thursday, the EPA and U.S. Army Corps of Engineers held a Southwest-focused Waters of the U.S. (WOTUS) roundtable, organized by the Arizona Farm Bureau. The EPA was told that the so-called “significant nexus” test used to determine whether waters are federally jurisdictional needs to be scrapped. Another participant advocated for a science-based alternative that is easy to replicate when making Clean Water Act determinations. Another WOTUS roundtable was hosted this afternoon by the Kansas Livestock Association to discuss Midwest perspectives and experiences on WOTUS implementation. Six additional roundtable conversations are planned through the end of June.

The Week Ahead

Tuesday, June 7

  • 10:00AM EST: Senate Agriculture, Nutrition, and Forestry Subcommittee on Conservation, Forestry, and Natural Resources holds a hearing to examine the western water crisis, focusing on confronting persistent drought and building resilience on our forests and farmland

Wednesday, June 8

  • 10:15AM EST: House Agriculture Subcommittee on Nutrition, Oversight, and Department Operations holds a hearing to discuss “A 2022 Review of the Farm Bill: Stakeholder Perspectives on SNAP”

Thursday, June 9

  • 9:00AM EST: House Agriculture Subcommittee on General Farm Commodities and Risk Management holds a hearing to discuss “A 2022 Review of the Farm Bill: Economic Perspectives on Title I Commodities and Title XI Crop Insurance”
  • 11:00AM EST: Senate Agriculture, Nutrition, and Forestry Subcommittee on Commodities, Risk Management, and Trade holds a hearing to examine agricultural trade, focusing on priorities and issues facing America’s farmers.

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

A Quick Look Back

“USDA Advances Food System Transformation with $43 Million for Urban Agriculture and Innovative Production, Adds New Urban County Committees” USDA

“USDA Partners with States, Territories, and Tribes to Enhance Supply-Chain Resiliency Through Local Food Purchase Programs” USDA

“USDA Has Provided $700 Million to Restore Sustainable Fuel Markets Hit by Pandemic” USDA

“Biden-Harris Administration Drought Resilience Interagency Working Group Releases Summary Report, Marks One Year Since Interagency Coordination” USDA

“USDA Announces Framework for Shoring Up the Food Supply Chain and Transforming the Food System to Be Fairer, More Competitive, More Resilient” USDA

“USDA Offers Funding Flexibility to Help States, WIC Families Amid Infant Formula Shortages” USDA

“U.S. EPA Restores Rights of States, Tribes to Block Polluting Projects”Reuters

“Minimizing Common Air Pollutant Could Lead to Better Crop Yields: Study” The Hill

“NAWG Reiterates Call to Consult USDA on SCOTUS Glyphosate Case Review” National Association of Wheat Growers

“Ukraine’s Giant Seed Bank at Risk of Being Lost as War Rages” Reuters

“Legislation Introduced to Improve Food Safety and Hold FDA Accountable” Food Safety News

“Deeply Rooted: The Rise of Food And Fertilizer Prices” NPR

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