Last week, the U.S. House and Senate voted to reauthorize the Farm Bill, providing funding and policy direction for agricultural, trade, conservation and nutrition programs for the next five years. The Agriculture Improvement Act of 2018 passed the House on a vote of 369-47 and the Senate by a vote of 87-13.
After many months of work, and through coordination with the Specialty Crop Farm Bill Alliance, PMA said it is pleased to see the House and Senate approve this bill and looks forward to it moving quickly to The President for signature.
PMA said it is particularly pleased to see important provisions for the fresh produce and floral industry in the following areas:
Funding for research on issues for specialty crops, including produce and floral.
Continued funding for export promotion and trade facilitation programs.
Expanded nutrition programs providing fruits and vegetables to children and vulnerable populations.
Policy recognizing the importance of fruits and vegetables in preventing and combating chronic disease.
Ensuring USDA has necessary resources to combat pests and diseases, which threaten specialty crop production and exports.
Maintaining funding to states for specialty crop block grants.
With passage of the Agriculture Improvement Act of 2018, the U.S. government provides important direction to the fresh produce and floral industry, PMA says.