tv Agriculture Department Officials Testify on 2023 Farm Bill CSPAN February 2, 2023 8:01pm-10:15pm EST
harder. that is over providing lower income students access to affordable internet so homework and just be homework. cox connects to compete. >> cox supports he spent as a public service in one piece of the television providers for giving a front row seat to democracy. coming up on cspan2 officials in the agriculture department discuss the upcoming 2023 farm bill. then let it majority schumer speaking to reporters about solutions to debt limit. later president biden vice president harris marked the 30th anniversary of the family and medical leave act with former president bill clinton. officials in the agriculture department testified on the farm belt which covers agriculture, nutrition, conservation and forestry policy for the next five years.
about organics this morning so we welcome you into this. speaking of a welcoming new members we are so pleased to have senator welch and senator fetterman as members of the committee. we appreciate you and are so glad you're joining us particularly at this moment we have such important work to do in the farmville so thank you. also, we welcome our witnesses undersecretary taylor really, really important topics. i know ranking member boozman and i share the fact we know we have a big job ahead and we are working closely together to be able to pass the next farm belt with strong bipartisan support. i'm really confident this committees up to the task to be able to do that right lester usda research and energy
programs and now we be in the new congress with a review of the farmville's horticulture and trade titles represent the breadth of american agriculture supporting our specialty crop and organic farmers. strengthening our local food system, building new markets abroad are all of our commodities and products and delivering critical food aid across the globe. one of the most diverse agricultural states in the nation. from there, apples, asparagus, bluebirds and charred produces three over three to crops. the message i hear from these farmers is clear. farm policy cannot be a one size fits all model. in the context of today's hearing let me talk about specialty crops food face rising labor costs increasing import
pressures and emerging pest diseases but i am committed to passing a farm belt that will improve their ability to manage it with and market their products. attention to their issues is vital to keep our american grown fruits and vegetables on our tables. the passage of the 2019 farmville we have seen continued growth in the organic sector which exceeded $63 billion in sales last year. we need to continue to support our organic farmers including those transitioning into the program. it's also important we made local agricultural market program permanent the 2018 farmville. we have seen a surge in demand for locally sourced food during the pandemic underscoring the need for more investments in our local food systems. globally we are facing unprecedented levels of food
insecurity compounded by high food prices, supply chain challenges and of course putin's war against ukraine. our farmers play a vital role in providing u.s. grown commodities to feed those in need. and farm bill development programs help to build resiliency on the ground. the farm belt creates opportunities for american farmers to connect with consumers around the world. by providing marketing assistance and credit access. agriculture experts have grown from $66 billion in 1996 to a record of more than $191 billion. that is more than 1 million american jobs on and off the farm. our witnesses today will highlight how those vital programs support the diversity of american agriculture. the success of our agricultural
economy requires continued investment and markets and opportunities for farmers. whether selling two neighbors are exporting globally whether they are growing traditional commodities, specialty crops, organics and farmville's help farmers put food on tables here and around the world. we all have a stake in continuing to make sure it happens. that is what this farmville is all about. i would now like to turn to my friend and ranking member senator boozman. >> thank you madam chair. let me start by welcoming 21 returning members to our committee. grateful if you have chosen to serve on the committee it is an important moment for u.s. agriculture. and i believe together we will be able to craft the policies needed to maintain the world's safest most abundant most affordable food supply while protecting the land, water, air in rural communities that we all care about. additionally i would like to welcome our two new member
senator welch and fetterman to the ad committee i had the pleasure of working with senator welch but we were in the house. i look forward to continuing our work. again he is a good friend senator is an 11 member from pennsylvania to serve on this committee since its founding in 1825. i look forward to his contributions and to work together in the future. chairman stabenow recently surprised us all with the announcement the hundred 18th congress would be her last in the senate. leading this committee serving as the third-highest member of the democratic leadership senator stabenow has climbed her way up the ladder to serve not like the people of michigan that many americans have benefit from the chairwoman will continue to pursue her goals which brings
today's hearings. thank you for convening today's hearing which works on last year drafting and passing the farmville. as we begin to create the next farmville it is important to understand the environment in which we find ourselves. december your over your consumer price index can settle at 6.5%. average inflation in 2022 is 8% the highest in more than four decades. inflation is hammering the country. it's not yielding anytime soon. in the farm sector set fertilizer, fuel, labor, land, taxes, interest and feed costs among others. the only saving grace from any
farmers with relatively high commodity prices and back in those higher prices was a surge in agriculture exports. during this last fiscal year in u.s. experts increase by 14% to record nearly $200 billion. headwinds on trade are beginning to develop it's important to have a focused and proactive trade agenda to support farm and rural economies. the farmville contains several programs intended to assist with trade promotion activities including the market access program in the foreign market development program. look forward to reviewing your effectiveness of these programs and ensuring our investment matches each program's needs. trade only works if trading partners live up to the agreements that they sign. when they don't they must be held to account scram please when first official acts and undersecretary taylor was to travel to mexico inappropriately
confront the government for proposing to ban significant departure from science -based trade policy. many countries and site farmer and anti- production policies the u.s. must actively promote and defend science -based technologies to help american farmers and ranchers continue to feed, fuel and clothe the world. global lewd food security only if we embrace scientific advancements to allow for more productive and sustainable agricultural production. today more than one in 10 people around the world 820 million people will be going to bed hungry for it beyond that nearly 350 million face acute food insecurity. man made conflict, economic shocks, supply chain costs resulting food price increases
we are seeing food being taken from the hungry to give to the starting. during my travels to east africa last fall i saw the impact firsthand a conflict in the horn of africa which leads many to seek refuge in kenya and other surrounding countries were however the unrelenting leaves all countries facing significant food shortage and u.s. commodities provide a vital support to find the hunger problem. consistent been the leader in food assistance around the world beginning with our efforts following world war ii. our emergency and nonemergency continue today and many are authorized under the farmville. americans should take great pride and peace progress these programs only save and transform lives in some of the most desperate situations that also create tremendous goodwill toward the u.s. and recipient
countries. today's hearing will flush of the most consequential and food security. i think our witnesses for joining us today and look forward to hearing again thank you very much for being here, madam chair. >> thank you very much for i will now introduce our three witnesses and ask each of you for five minutes of opening testimony before questions. alexis taylor is the undersecretary for trade and foreign agricultural affairs. prior to this role she was the director of the oregon department of agriculture but she also has experience with united states department of agriculture and in congress haven't worked as an advisor to representative boswell of iowa senator of montana. good to have you back. our next witness is janet moffat who serves as the undersecretary of marketing and regulatory programs. before joining usda
undersecretary moffat had multiple leadership positions in the california department of food and agriculture she's also spent 10 years as a managing director of her families organic walnut farm in california. thank you again for being here. and finally sarah charles is the assistant to the administrator bureau for humanitarian assistance. the u.s. government lead for international disaster response. prior to her current position she held roles at the international rescue committee and the national security council of the white house. thank you so much for being here as well. works good morning senator stabenow at ranking boozman and members of the committee. i'm pleased with colleagues and usda and usaid. chairwoman stabenow i like typically thank you for your leadership and dedication.
not just of this committee but to the entire agricultural sector over the years. why you're not leaving us quite yet you will be missed. i appreciate the opportunity for trade, market development international food assistance and capacity building programs authorized by the farmville under the trade agricultural area. this mission area reduce barriers opens new markets risk farm and to global security the missionary overseas u.s. scotus office is. u.s. u.s. agriculture to the world to enhance export in global food security. supports food and agricultural sector of the network of economists expert negotiators in d.c. and nearly 100 offices around the world.
or proud that our role in opening and maintaining markets has resulted in a new record as been highlighted here and agricultural exports of over $160 billion last year topping the previous year's record by 14%. while the summers are impressive, what's more impressive is it real world impact the experts after producers in the rural communities. u.s. agriculture exports support more than 1 million jobs here at home and contribute more than 154 billion in additional economic activity. numerous farm bills congress is authorized and refined and effective combination of market development programs. felt market facilitate financing of overseas sales in excess market barriers. we partner with the diverse group of cooperating representing u.s. food and agricultural industries to help
u.s. exporters develop and maintain markets. recently prepared study u.s. agriculture of the overall economy. u.s. determine export values by over $24 export market development. likewise we are equally as proud of her international food assistance and capacity building programs which provide assistance that have helped millions of people around the world. i see firsthand the impact of this work to help developing countries improve their agricultural systems and trade capacity to receive our export or supply us with products the u.s. needs to meet consumer demand. before developing countries can become customer stress agricultural products economic socially stable program support this work.
usda sponsored fellowship and exchange program investing future of developing countries by enabling international researchers policymakers and agricultural specialists to work alongside the u.s. counterparts acquiring the knowledge and skills to help build their country's agricultural sectors. by helping developing countries strengthen their agricultural institution and foster regulatory systems that support science -based trade policy these programs help to improve international market access for u.s. agricultural products. i'm proud to let usda act on efforts for foreign market access u.s. agricultural global marketplace support through security and millions of people around the world. we look forward for the opportunity to refine our programs congress works to reauthorize the farm belt so we can make u.s. foreign policy
more efficient, equitable and sustainable. while providing export opportunities of our farmers, ranchers and businesses for thank you again for having me and i look forward to any questions you might have. >> thank you very much. undersecretary moffat? >> thank you chairwoman stabenow, reckitt making member boozman for the opportunity to be with you today and for the wide array of resources you have provided usga as to partner with farmers, ranchers and producers to strengthen american agriculture. and my travels as undersecretary for marketing and regulatory program i have seen the impact of the farmville and the importance of the programs in the horticulture title for i've heard directly from farmers and ranchers about how they benefit from these programs and our work at usda. growing up in a small community with a family of farmers i have
seen the benefits of the farmville firsthand and i know the ingenuity and the passion that farmers and ranchers bring to the challenges and rewards are producing the foods that feed us all. over the past years facing the challenges that farmers and ranchers face particularly expected marcus to capture their fair share of the food dollar. even with record farm income many farmers, too many farmers on 89% must work off farm to meet the needs of the families. small and midsized farmers are impacted the most on their far too many barriers for new beginning farmers. under the leadership of the biden/harris administration secretary bill sack with the support of leaders of this committee usda's have been hard at work to address these challenges and strengthen our food, agricultural and rural economies. strengthening and transforming local regional food systems
newly created procurement program reporting rural prosperity front and center adding value to where food is produced ensuring capitol stays in the community and long-term economic growth in cyber communities. these programs created went for local farmers local economies and people's health. local school districts i have seen up close the excitement farmers, schools, feud banks and community set for these programs. i've also heard about the fact that our best access to programs is also important for its one of the reasons we launch usda regional food business centers and why we have received over $1.8 billion the centers will provide exactly the needed assistance coordination capacity to help farmers through
businesses local economies thrive. another vital part of our work. we are excited this your specialty crop block grant will have awarded $1 billion in funding for projects across the country to support vital critical resource for marketing education programs for producers and to support our local economies. in addition we are committed to growing markets producers use smart methods consumer demand for a variety of projects. fair and more competitive markers for organic producers including strengthening organic enforcement role is required in the 2018 farmville. these rules coupled with organic transition and initiative directly addressing challenges facing organic farmers with new
programs that will provide technical assistance, farmer to farmer mentoring, calling for voluntary conservation practices in building targeted organic markets. were also supporting farmers as we save our crops and pets and disease assuring our trade partners of our high quality agricultural products outside of the horticulture title i'm also proud of the work were doing to protect animals from pests and diseases thanks to the resources provided 2018 farmville. it's fitting two beers at undersecretary taylor given the close working relationship between the technical experts and the team as we work together to ensure international standards and strong trade are built on sound science. there is more work ahead for sure. but one thing is sure bright leveraging of resources and support of a better and more competitive market for u.s. farmers, ranchers and consumers is in the best interest of our nation's economy. our nations food system and the environment there with the
support of congress i believe we can and must continue this effort. and i look forward and continued to champion american agriculture. i be happy to answer any questions you have, thank you. >> thank you so much for it finally you are recognized for five minutes. chairwoman stabenow ranking member boozman and distinguish members the mated rate thank you for the opportunity program authorized. as a result of this commute leadership and support denies six is the world's largest owner of humanitarian food assistance for a time these programs have never been more critical sentiment boozman outlines today in the midst of it on precedent of global hunger crisis analyst estimate acute hunger levels are 70% higher than pre-pandemic levels in 2019. and made these wrecker high levels of need u.s. leadership
to fight hunger could not be more important or more evidence. in fiscal year 2022 u.s. id and usda drew down the full balance of the bill emerson meditating trust in total program two-point to billion dollars in title to emergency assistance. but these funds will provide significant infusion of american grown commodities to countries at high risk of famine around the world. our leadership is most evident in the horn of africa read currently experiencing the most severe food security crisis in the world. somalia, northern canyon southern ethiopia the sun has dried up endless miles of orange cracked earth and millions of livestock have died. in the my travel to sentiment mothers and eight mother of seven when the ground dried up and food vanish livestock eight plastic sheeting out of
desperation. all 18 of her livestock her entire livelihood perished in the drought of acute malnutrition worried her young daughter might die. thanks to food for peace assistance and her family received nutrition support from our partners and her daughter is now fully recovered. this aid was part of a broader of funds that have been key to preventing the onset of famine in the horn and in particular in somalia. however, as we speak today six the failed rainy season is forecasted food security continues to deteriorate. without sustaining assistance famine is projected to emerge this spring. for usaid is taking everything possible to meet needs worldwide we often face a sharp decline in humanitarian resources now the agency has exhaustively generous supplemental appropriations provided by congress. they continue call for other
international donors to step up for it also looking for ways to drive greater efficiency in our programs. over the past decade we've been grateful for bipartisan support from congress and reforms made during the former farmville to make sure food for peace program can meet the humanitarian challenges of the day. to date the global lead and skyrocketing cost of stretch the limits of these programs are billing constraints. as it works to reauthorize peace act this year historic global food security crisis there's an opportunity to maximize american generosity and save even more lives free technical changes to date legislation can improve the impact of food assistance will maintain a proud legacy. for example reducing complex accounting requirements associate with food for peace act would enable partners to spend more effort on delivering food assistance will maintain strict oversight of funds. simple fighting accounting systems or just barriers to local organizations and becoming
partners. i should forge reauthorizing food for peace act out also ask you consider the non- these nonemergency programs as resilient food security acts are relatively small but part our toolkit citing global hunger. they target the poorest households in areas of recurrent crisis help families graduate from dependents with humanitarian aid. we would welcome working with you and adjustments to the spring to get partners greater flexibility to design programs tailored to the unique context and likely to reduce need for you mentoring assistance in the future. we will have significant benefits. an impact evaluation on food for peace resilience programs for every 1 dollar invested, households could see over $3 in additional benefits. helping families move out of dependence on aid.
as we confront a hungrier future u.s. assistance programs have never been more vital. thanks to this committee's partnership all around the world nutrition projects and commodities from the american people, save lives are affirmation worldwide and the source of hope to those affected some of the world's worst crises. thank you i look forward to your questions. >> thank you so much. we will now start with around questions to the committee. undersecretary moffat let me first talk to you about specialty crops. i've been pleased to author this title the horticulture title back in 2008. i did not know you did not routinely add titles it was a very, very big fight but we got it done. as a group we grow more fruits and vegetables and anything else certainly smart michigan agricultural economy it's almost
half the cash receipts of the country i'm glad we have a title that represents the interests of these products. could you talk about ways we could strengthen domestic markets for our special crop farmers? i am including local and regional markets just speak a little bit more about that for. >> thank you center stabenow. thank you for your leadership on the specialty crop block grant both domestically as well as abroad. particularly block grant is a strong partnership as well as specialty crop industry and enhancing the crop specialty to create a new beverage product increase the consumption that's
one piece of it also addressing what i was really excited to see building a new economy in alabama for specialty crop producers where they have access to local markets at the same time the grant programs are dressing critical as well as education needs. these programs combine and enhancing and particularly global specialty crops to our communities have access to the great healthy produce and food that is grown in our community. >> thank you very much britt undersecretary taylor how can we improve specialty crop farmers
to compete internationally in international markets? especially considering the unfair competition they face from heavily subsidized imports? chairwoman stabenow thank you for this question. it is really important and thinking how trade policy works for all of her agricultural producers here in the united states. as i think about this question first and foremost we need to make sure our specialty crop producers have open access to markets. that's access to markets here and i was the undersecretary moffat works very closely on that. but markets abroad as well prejudice about the specialty crop sector two weeks ago. how they leverage some of the technical assistance for specialty crops task the farm belt has created and found it how important is technical projects are to knock down trade barriers that they are
experiencing. so programs like that are critical access new markets the trade commitments being made and they are being lived up to and enforcing them when they are not. it's a multi- pronged approach we have to focus your domestically. but also internationally. >> thank you very much. we know you spoken about the fact aid programs are incredibly important. number of years ago i led to the agricultural to africa and we saw close how significant this is. because of the weather disasters and growing climate crisis and so on things are even worse. i know when we were in there. so we have to provide emergency
food assistance for we also know growing global markets and building resiliency is important. so, from your perspective how can we improve these programs while maintaining a variety of tools in the toolbox and ensuring in-kind commodities remain in the mix? >> thank you for that question by certainly welcome hotels in the future we have a lot to share and the lot for the american people can be proud of that we are doing in the horn and elsewhere in the world to address food insecurity. the vast majority ever assistance is for emergencies there are some efficiencies that can be gained that allow us to layer in supported assistance with those simplified accounting of those programs. i also think speaking to your point about building resiliency for a small portion of these about 10% is really geared towards graduating people
i would love to work with you all your teams on greater flexibility various programs that allow us to tailor them to the specific context including some context not using in-kind commodities. >> thank you very much i will now turn to senator boozman. >> thank you madam chair. what i would like to do is yield to senator grassley. he has made great efforts should be here. we appreciate him showing up and has some important questions he would like to ask. so, with your permission. >> absolute. senator grassley. >> thank you i appreciate distinguished leaders of this committee. my questions are for secretary taylor. i am glad you are on the job now confirmed because in your position you're going to be a lead advocate for u.s. farmers across the world.
everybody on this committee knows only produce a third more than what we consume domestically that international trade to get that out of our country around the world is a very important issue for prosperity and agriculture. so, when it comes agricultural trade the concern i have from iowans is access to mexico's corn market. i'm sure other senators have the same concern. delete 90% of the corn acreage in the united states being planted to biotech seeds and mexico being the number one purchaser of u.s. corn, i am concerned this decree is not being met with the urgency that it deserves for this is the case for both iowa producers and most importantly pursued insecurity and mexico and around the world. as a former chair of the finance committee, i was glad to lead the effort for the u.s. and say that end up getting 89 votes. i was pleased to see it
yesterday at the u.s. trade representative have formally established 82nd usmc a dispute settlement panel to hold unfair canadian dairy tariff rates policies accountable. so, the question is for you, alexis, wising by the administration not established such a dispute settlement process under usmc a panel with a mexico on this issue of gmo's? >> thank you, senator grassley for that question. i would say i do think we are engaging with urgency on this issue. we certainly appreciate the potential impact that the proposed decree could have on our corn growers here in the united states. but much broader than that fundamentally hour trading system globally but also within the u.s. and ca is on science
-based policies the challenge to that is greatly concerning proper from specialty crop producers livestock users all at the concern with this decree moving away from that fundamental principle. i come on my third week on the job ambassadors second we got a job we traveled jointly to mexico to get engage with our counterparts in there. highlight our concerns. highlight this is a fundamental principle from united states on what its global trading system is built upon and not something we can walk away from or negotiate away from. we continue to have those conversations with our mexican counterparts. we are reserving the right all the rights awarded to us under usmc a. we will continue to ensure our trade that has been granted to us within usmc a is lived up to by all of our trading partners.
and look forward to working with you and this committee on this very important issue. it is a fundamentally critical question we are answering here. >> are you aware of any timeline to start the negotiations? to get the process in place? like senator grassley i would say we're still productively engaging with mexico. we have been very clear the usmc a gives us a process to go down if we cannot find a resolution on this issue. and that we reserve all of those rights. but at least today it we are still productively engaging and hope to find a resolution that does not disrupt the trade impact our process and ultimately impact negatively mexican livestock producers who are dependent on this product as well. >> for you secretary taylor a key component of the farmville includes investment export market develop programs
authorized under title iii. these investments help promote u.s. products emerging and developed countries and can pave the way for bilateral agreements free-trade agreements are essential for u.s. agricultural products and making sure our producers can compete on a level playing field. as under secretary do you think your programs can pave the way for bilateral agreements? >> senator grassley, i think our market develop programs are critical and a host of ways and areas. first, and it helps to build the bridge to relationships training is still very much about relationships. connecting buyers and sellers with products that we have an products that they want. the same time they help address many technical barriers to trade that our producers are experiencing and our exporters are experiencing and market.
i do think as we utilize these programs in partnership with industry they help strengthen economic ties as we continue to look for new diversified markets for they are critically important to those $196 billion of agricultural exports we saw last year. >> thank you secretary taylor brady thank you leaders of the committee for accommodating me. ask absolutely. senator brown? >> thank you madam chair and i don't others and extolling your leadership i've been on the chair of this committee from the time the house together we sat on two committees in the senate she always puts workers first and people work and family farmers first. i'm so appreciative of that. the kindness you show around your two other members which is not always the case for all of our colic so thank you for that. senator walsh welcome to the committee. i noticed the republican got off
on the committee. so i understand that tapered under secretary at moffitt let me start there. thank you for being here. the pandemic highlighted the vulnerability of long global supply chain some in agriculture and industry throughout our economy the need for more locally and regionally produce food. chair stabenow and i have been advocates for longtime of local food and proud to create a role in the lamp program the last farmville was a great step toward strengthening local regional food systems. but more must be done that's why center thune and i are strengthening processing act apart our bill is about expanding local meat and poultry processing infrastructure is critical for going to lower prices and ever approaching consolidation we have seen in part two places in our economy overall. working on a bill to procurement
from local producers i have heard concerns from organizations and ohio under secretary at moffitt and about the application process for the program can be too difficult to access for let's say a lower resource underserved communities. >> senator brown thank you for that question. thank you for your leadership on the local agricultural marketing program. as you said at the height of the pandemic the early stages of a pandemic we saw how important local and regional supply chains are and the lamp program particularly is a valuable building those bridges and built the connections and the capacity for both communities for buyers in the communities as well as farmers and producers in the community to really foster those relationships so that we can get more products into the local
food system as well enhancing our supply chain and really giving more choice for farmers with excess about the lamp program and the application process the leadership in 2018 farmville been a few different things. resources to create things like guidebooks my answer technical questions we open office hours and answer questions for people who are potential applicants. i'm proud to say we get toward the next round much more
streamlined component organizations for producers to have much easier. >> i thank you for that part switching to undersecretary taylor, thank you. let's talk about corn, soy, wheat, other agricultural commodities. markets are important to farmers certainly in my state. to the chinese communist party hurting farmers in my state in the process the market access program using the market access program. >> thank you, senator brown. market access -- make the develop program we can access is the largest.
in funding for that program. i would say it's highly oversubscribed. with our industry partners they submit proposals to export market development activities within the frame of that program. and on average with them self array getting what they are submitting we are doing $3 million at least of project proposals. there is a large need their on the people's republic of the largest trading partner. this is also important to note when tournament marketing develop programs they are highly leveraged. for every 1 dollar federal funding that's being utilized somewhere between $2.30 and
$2.40 of industry funds are going to match those resources. so, while the federal government is invested or industries invested in these markets and successes there as well for. >> thank you, thank you madam chair. >> thank you very much for 10 or boozman. but i would like to do manager of got a bunch of numbers here. i think i will be back at the end and go ahead and go to the line. trucks are right you are back clean up alright. [laughter] thank you madam chair and thank you ranking member boozman and the swell. and to our witnesses, thank you ladies bring with us today. the continued growth in iowa and the aggie industry is independent and tran is dependent on strong trade but unfortunately we have seen some hesitation with the biden administration does not believe in free trade negotiations and it took nearly 20 months to
nominate undersecretary alexis taylor. thankfully we were able to get alexis confirmed and the 11th hour of the 1117th congress it's well deserving of this position. undersecretary taylor in 2020 alone our state cash receipts that's a lot of money folks for the state of iowa. the highest said that in the valued commodities being corn, pork and soybeans. this is why i am glad to reintroduce them bipartisan expanding agricultural export act to increase for market access programs and board
market. trade is way too critical for many states including iowa having a strong commodity market exports have that value to farmers and bottom-line and i was economy. to undersecretary taylor will start with hubert's great to have you on board. in your testimony you highlighted the success of the map program for increasing u.s. ethanol sales to korea which is a great achievement. many countries are looking to utilize to achieve their climate goals do you agree bio fuels are cleaner fuel source? and can you talk about the potential that we might have for ethanol exports to india were they really do need a lot of help. >> i get senator ernst for that question. thank you for your support in this committee support late last year. he was greatly appreciated.
it's an important way not just united states lower carbon emissions. obviously coming from iowa i am well-versed in how important biofuel industry is for the economy. having a cleaner global resource but is important components mom we are engaged with trading partners on often. and frequently. within india there are many countries there is potential. open to the council to make sure we are targeting the priority markets. senior levels to make sure this is truly an important issue as we are navigating not just
opening trade also addressing carbon reduction globally. >> thank you i appreciate that. the last time you were in front of the committee we did discuss mexico biotech decree and senator grassley has already spoken to that. but, just so folks know band does go into effect it would cause our overall u.s. economy to lose nearly $74 billion in economic output over a ten-year period that is for our awareness. an outside portion of that would impact iowa. which is our top corn growing state. i appreciate your attention to that and work in that area, working with mexico. undersecretary moffitt i want to
commend usda for its efforts in handling pathogenic influenza and for keeping africans mind fever at the u.s. hpi has been devastating to iowa's poultry industry and aff it is the absolute worst case scenario for not only iowa but all american pork producers. so it really does underscore the importance of the national animal disease preparedness and response program that was great and alas farmville in 2018. i want to commend you on that. there's a lot more work to do. we will be submitting questions for the record but i will yield back. thank you very much and thanks for witnesses. >> thank you, senator bennett. >> thank you madam chair. thank you for your continued service into the committee read secretary moffitt i want to say thank you to you for coming to
visit our potato producers there. and to come to understand how important it is to have the success we have opening up mexican market for them. we have to continue to build up or else to my colleagues on the committee trait is great. we need trademark colorado producers believe we need more trade if we don't have the labor to actually get these crops in, we are going to have a huge problem in this country we are facing a massive crisis when it comes to farm labor in the united states. including the valley revisited. so i hope for this congress miracle of miracles we might actually be able to finally address this. because there is nobody but congress that can address this. our growers and producers in crop folks and my state and i and all across the country are
depending on us to do that. i wanted to ask you about secretary moffitt in 2018. in this farmville the committee legalized production of hemp as you know for the first time. farmers in colorado for eagle to plant and grow it. unfortunately burdens and testing requirements, the lack of processing facilities have stunted the potential for this versatile crop. a crop people all over the country are interested in growing print what usda resources helping farmers and state navigate the complex hemp regulatory framework part which we look to an upcoming farmville to ensure the success of this crop? quick center bennett thank you. it was a pleasure to visit the valley with the potato producers there. we continue to working on the potato market access we work so hard to achieve regarding your question on hemp, wasn't
generally first of 2021 we have 42 states that have state approved plans with usda to register and continue the hemp production in those 42 states for the rest of the state usda works direct with hemp producers. we have 53 tribes around the country that are also partnering with us with hemp plans as well. as far as the question about what resources we have it usda to support producers we have done a handful of things as we have worked in 2000 farmville on developing the hemp program at the agricultural marketing services. one is to make trim and easy registration process any streamline it process all of the procedures that go along with hemp production are in one system that's easy to communicate with producers as well as with the local officials for that's one key part of it.
also it last week we produced the first hemp report this national hemp report was part of market news that will provide weekly timely information for hemp producers to access information on market so they can make informed business decisions. >> of the smart we can delete farmville i hope you'll let us know. miss charles i had a question for you. as you know unprovoked war on ukraine has significantly damaged global food supply chain including export of ukrainian wheat and other grains to africa, asia, the middle east for this exacerbated the food shortages you talked about in your opening testimony in the horn of africa that are already dealing as you said with destroyed droughts. how can congress use the upcoming farmville to provide central humanitarian food and mitigate the global hunger crisis we are now facing?
>> and we saw this year the importance of flexibility in our toolkits. so to address russia's war on ukraine we both immediately drew down the full balance have exhausted the full balance of the trust to use u.s. sourced in-kind commodities to get to those places like yemen and ethiopia. northern kenya in east sudan that be most impacted by shortages in price spikes as a result of russia's war on ukraine previous item assistance. our non- title ii assistance to procure ukrainian wheat work at the world food program is proof of concept for the black sea grant initiative that is been so important in helping stabilize wheat prices still at quite a high level but with less volatility towards the end of the of the black sea green initiative in place to miss on the days after russia's invasion of ukraine. using all the different tools the toolkit to help ensure that
food is not out of reach for the world congress. >> thank you madam chair for. >> thank you very much before going to the next question i just want to thank you, senator bennett. no one worked harder at the end of the last congress on farm worker i cannot agree more with what needs to happen around immigration reform. our farmers need a legal system that works for them. and so, thank you. thank you very much. >> thank you madam chairman and ranking member boozman i certainly appreciate this all-female delegation at the end of the table discussing agricultural issues. undersecretary taylor, this question is for you. the pulse racing number one commodity and mississippi in terms of production value. and my state has produced over
three-point to $6 billion worth of poultry in 2022. really important to us. but, we all know the avian influenza highly pathogenic influenza's been spreading across the country press add commissioner we served as egg commissioners together that was one thing that kept me awake at night. the fear of that. the disease itself has primarily affected the egg industry it is put the poultry industry on high alert created trade barriers for the poultry industry. i am thankful for the efforts of aphis and their staff. they are doing their best under secretary moffitt leadership. but while mississippi is fortunate to have only detected avian influenza and one commercial knot in my house so far, that could change at any time. china has imposed barriers to
trade on poultry products from several states because of the outbreak. directly contradicting an agreement previously entered with the u.s. if we do not stay on top of this issue, mississippi will be next. in 2020 china's general administration of customs china gac c and usda animal and plant health inspection services agreed to a regionalization policy for the avian influenza outbreaks. china agreed that in the event of the outbreak is detected in poultry, a statewide ban would be enforced for all products coming from the state of detection and the resumption of the imports and exports would be approved notes sooner than 90 days post virus elimination after disinfection and cleaning. this was a huge win for our chicken sector. under this protocol china has become the u.s. poultry
industries top export market. course you and i found out in china they only want the clause, the feet straight and portions of last august china has failed to honor the 2020 agreement too. and during this time gac c has not responded to the request to lift bands on a number of states that are now eligible the resume exploits under the agreement.
issue? >> thank you for that question, senator heidi smith. i've had many internal discussions. i have not engaged with china yet on this. this agreement around reopening after a high-pass outbreak is being led by discussions with ustr under the phase i agreement and ensuring china was up to those commitments. we are engaging those conversations with ustr but i will say while china is a very important market, that they are also very challenging so constant engagement at senior levels is critically important and something i am committed to doing with my chinese counterparts so i know how important they are for your growers. >> you answered my second question with that answer. thank you very much.
>> thank you so much for the opportunity to be a member of this committee. this is my very first meeting, so i'm just honored to be an advocate for pennsylvania's very critical kind of agricultural industry. it's going to start out with a very broad kind of question given that's just starting in on this. agriculture is pennsylvania's single biggest industry. we have over 60,000 farms and 97% of the farm don't. what changes are needed to the
departments trade programs to make them stronger? >> so, senator i appreciate those numbers. i think that's important to underscore the majority of our farms in your state and across the country are family-owned and operated. grew up on my family's farm in iowa that's been in the family 160 years. as i think about the trade programs that we have, we are focused on ensuring that small and midsize producers and businesses can access those programs that they are able to be mad navigating and identify the diverse market opportunities outside the country that might be of interest to them and certainly welcome any additional engagement on how we can make sure the family farmers are able to tack into the program to connect to the market and the buyers in those markets and ultimately the consumers who
have a desire for the products. >> pennsylvania has an incredibly strong organic farming industry. in fact i believe it's the second largest in the nation actually. but a lot of challenges as we all know. what changes to the usda made recently to strengthen the organic label and what additional tools are needed do you think? >> thank you for that question and your interest in organic production. two weeks ago, usda announced the largest change to the national organic standards since the national organic programs with the strengthening of the organic enforcement and strengthening as it will be implemented and we are already working with producers and certifiers on implementation of the rule. we will close some of the
loopholes and added to the players that have a part of the organic industry that weren't part of the organic industry to make sure that we have a level playing field for all producers while at the same time we also grow the organic produce surveys producer basethrough the transid partnership program so this deal based technical assistance driven by producers and organizations in pennsylvania to mentor the new and aspiring farmers to get the certification as well. rulemaking is important and the support we need to grow and enhance and create organic production as another part of what we are working on. >> thank you. >> just again looking forward to learning so much more from all of you that i'm going to be able to contributor leon. >> thank you so much. we know pennsylvania agriculture
is very important and we are glad to have you on the committee to be that voice. thank you so much. >> thank you madam cherry and ranking member. i'm sure everybody knows in the room this farm bill which is authorized about every five years helps provide affordable, safe, reliable food and fiber for this country. and it's not lost upon me that as i look around the room and see the portraits in the room senator pat roberts legacy stares over all of us and this is the first farm bill in 40 years when his blueprints are not going to be all over it. they want kansas to get americans to know this is every bit as important to me as it is to him and i will make sure that as the father of crop insurance it will be protecting that he and i think about it in so many ways it's important to kansas
and our guest today that it was a 1933, excuse me 1953 a farmer in cheyenne county kansas stood up at a kansas farm bureau meeting and said we can help people overseas and gave food for peace and we are so proud of the program has continued and president eisenhower signed that into law shortly thereafter. this is the 21st anniversary of the dual make governor bill which helps provide food for education. so we appreciate you all helping us carry those legacies forward. now onto some tough questions. a couple for undersecretary taylor. this is a two-part question. the first is a yes or no answer but before you answer i will get the second part. does the biden administration believe mexico has the right to exclude genetically modified u.s. corn from its market under the terms of the u.s. mca?
and if the follow-up question, the biden administration's triggered the dispute resolution system six separate times to complain about mexican labor conditions. in the meantime, the administrations refused to trigger the u.s. mca to contest mexico's plant exclusion of american corn. they feel this administration is putting mexican assembly workers ahead of farmers. what are we waiting for to trigger this mechanism? i'm tired of talking about it and praying about it. we hope there's time for action. >> thank you for those questions. first and foremost under u.s. mca we've been very clear the proposed ban on genetically engineered corn doesn't live up to the science-based standards that were housed within u.s.
mca. two weeks ago on my third week on the job i traveled to mexico with ambassador mccaleb to have the conversations directly with our mexican counterparts. this is a fundamentally important question two how u.s. mca was billed but also the global trading system. >> yes or no the biden administration believes they have a right to exclude genetically modified corn from its market under the terms of the u.s. mca? >> we do not, sir. >> next question again for the secretary before the eighth circuit, attorneys for the justice department suggested the usda are not experts on the use of pesticides. they use the argument to try to convince the circuit judge to ignore secretary vilsack standing by the science in a letter to members of congress. will you stand up to the justice department and emphasize that we do feel like we should have experts in this area in usda?
>> we do have efforts. my first review are working bilateral with partners around the world on these issues that are impacting u.s. agricultural trade. >> how do you feel about the justice department basically slapping you on the face saying the usda doesn't understand the science? >> it's really engaging as undersecretary said in the bilateral conversations with other countries making sure what we are doing and implementing science base we of course, and secretary vilsack talks about how important science is whether it's with our trading partners or the domestic industry we continue to stand by the science and have robust conversations
across the administration in 2010 we were giving commodities as opposed to cash about 10-1 and now at about two thirds of the aide is in cash rather than u.s. commodities. can someone justify why we are giving cash instead of commodities? >> the other isn't about giving cash instead of commodities, it's the cost of managing the programs including the significantly increased shipping and transportation commodities. >> a document from crs that shows two thirds of the money is being given as cash rather than
u.s. commodities. >> without objection. >> welcome to the committee. >> every step that you make will be observed. >> we are delighted to be here with you and the ranking member. we worked together in the house. it's essential to all of us. all of us benefit not just by what farmers do but what they do being the custodians with the landscape. a very small agriculture as you know that we've got to find a way to make local agriculture in every district sustainable and i want to turn to the honorable
jenny who came to an organic dairy farm this has been in the family since 1868. just think about the things the generations the family went through and now they are milking i think over 90 heads on this 300 plus acre dairy farm and in 40 years they don't plow the land that's productive and doing a great job. one of the things that came up about the organic rules. it's also important the rules not to be oppressive so the folks that are honestly trying to comply with of them don't have to get buried in paperwork and that is the question that was asked by the fifth and sixth
generation of those present. maybe you can elaborate on how to thread the needle which would be important. >> to be there with you and the family and conversations like those around the kitchen table is such a valuable part of the job that i have in forming the decisions we are making to make sure they are really rooted in the best interest of farmers and producers and folks around the committee so thank you for having me. regarding, yes organic rules are such an important part and the organic program is based on an ever-changing organic industry so continuously updating the rules is an important part and i know in someone that has organic
product around the world how important that level playing field is. making sure organic producers while implementing very rigorous standards are also doing paperwork that is unnecessary and an important part of that so we are making sure a lot of the enforcement rules will be about bringing in new brokers, importers, folks that haven't traditionally been part and certified under standards. there won't be a lot of changes that existing producers see the side of the importing product so the paperwork they are filling out will not see many changes. >> one thing that could be helpful if they have issues with how the rules are being implemented or interpreted without i would think it would be a common concern.
>> that was a heartbreaking story you told about the woman that lost her 18 cattle and nearly lost the wife of her daughter and it's reassuring and wonderful. there's a constant issue about what we can do to help local agriculture there. is there any policies that are under consideration about trying to help the food insecurity by holding food production locally? >> a big piece of the development assistance with poverty reduction and increasing the yields of small holds farmers to increase food security in the long term.
the bulk of that is emergency food assistance that we do have a small percentage above 10% of the program that is dedicated to longer-term resilience activities, these are activities often targeting small scale farmers were helping pastoralists to help them build resilience and be more able to withstand shocks by improving productivity yields using claimant smart agriculture day and we would like to work with you and your team as we were gone reauthorizing the farm bill i yield back. thank you madam chair. >> senator thune. >> thank you madam chair for holding today's hearing to consider trade and horticulture titles of the farm bill. i look forward to working with both of you with the witnesses
and panelists for being here today to provide your input on this important topic and i know it's already been touched on and my colleagues have raised this but i also want to reiterate my concerns with mexico's efforts to restrict corn imports that would threaten food insecurity and to stifle the innovation in the united states and mexico and undersecretary taylor i appreciate the strong stance on this and urge you to continue holding mexico accountable on its trade commitments. i am concerned about the lack of attention to expanding market access for u.s. agricultural products. i hope you and your ustr chief negotiator when it comes to the trade in your new role what are some specific new ideas in
addition to maintaining corn exports to mexico, what are your ideas on the new opportunities for u.s. farmers and ranchers and is the administration considering market access opportunities in africa and finally are you advocating for reauthorization trade promotion authority? >> senator thank you for those questions. i think first and foremost, one of the areas that is a priority for me coming into this role is looking at the market diversification. obviously, the people's republic of china is the largest single agricultural market but we all saw but in over reliance on any single market can be so looking to help the exporters and farmers and ranchers identify new markets is critical. i look to a couple different regions of the world first i think south asia is an exciting opportunity and i think about countries like vietnam when they
have some of the highest macroeconomic growth projected in asia. they also have an expected 5 million middle-class household so there is an opportunity today and early on to create lifelong consumers, the population is relatively young so agricultural products i think there's a lot of potential and exciting opportunity there. it's still getting under developed into exactly what the outcomes might be, but i'm hopeful that we will see successful access there addressing sps to knock down some trade hurdles we currently experience. likewise generally there's a lot of potential and specifically i think kenya is an exciting
market which we are engaging with as well. we are also engaging in a couple areas in the african continent. we are working with the continental free-trade area that is under negotiation but one of the areas we are providing technical support in particular as they are addressing regulations and how the principles can help form the continental trade agreement and the u.s. is providing that support which will also benefit our agricultural producers so i think there is a significant opportunity. >> let me say again the way to isolate china is to do it economically and that has a lot of national security implications as well and it just seems they did address the issue of market access which is what
the producers are looking for and free-trade agreements with countries in that region of the world and other places around the world is something that we think are low hanging fruit. so it seems like the administration, no request for trade promotion authority hasn't been an mta done and the issue or at the time was there have been we've seen discussions around this issue it's been related to issues that don't have any market access. you've got to step up your game a year and i hope you well. i would like a few seconds remaining but during the confirmation hearing you mentioned your willingness to work on a path forward labeling last year. i introduced a bill that went direct ustr development and the wto compliant means. my question is will you provide a technical assistance on the legislation and what actions to coordinate on a path forward for
mandatory? >> we would welcome the opportunity to provide technical assistance and work with you and congress on implementation with colleagues the ustr should pass. >> thank you, madam chair. >> senator smith. >> it's a great to be back in the committee. i really appreciate the focus today on in part on trade. trade is incredibly important to the producers in minnesota, very important to the health and vitality of the agricultural community and we need to make sure that it's working for everybody for all of the producers including small producers. i appreciate the question the senator started with so let me start with you. i've been focused on how we can support tribal agricultural production in the united states and with this in mind provisions to include tribal representation
on trade missions historically the usda hasn't done everything it can to support tribal producers, so there's a big opportunity for example in minnesota traditional wild rice plays an important role in the native communities is it to promote a greater inclusion of tribal agricultural and food products and trade related activities and how can we use the farm bill to continue promoting the products? >> a member from montana and in the state of oregon, i fully appreciate how important the tribal nations are and how important making sure the programs that we are administering usda that they are
working for them. as you mentioned the 2018 farm electorally directed usda to develop some goals around tribal participation within the trade related activities. we have a key partner in the agricultural counsel. they often participate in trade shows. coming from the state department of agriculture we also had a western regional group that was a regional trade group tapping into market access programs. i know my colleagues particularly in alaska some of the alaska tribes participated as well for promoting seafood exports and i think that we appreciated that direction from the farm bill. we are ramping up that engagement with our tribal nations with in particular the
intertribal conflict but certainly would welcome additional feedback on how we can continue to make sure the programs are working for the tribal nations as well. >> i appreciate that and we will look to work closely with you. it's important. another question related to geographic indicators. the european union continues to impose geographical indications that can block the use of commonly used household names and this is a significant barrier roadblock for producers and for example in minnesota derry including groups like the co-op they make cheese like parmesan, asiago, fontina, which would face unfair barriers if they try to export these products to the eu or other countries that are influenced by the eu stands on geographical implications and in the u.s. mca we had hard-fought provisions around this issue that forced mexico for example to not restrict access to products, so
can you tell us how you and your colleagues at ustr are building upon those efforts and update us on what your strategies are and what more you think we need to do in this area? >> thank you senator smith. i have yet to see the math so at times it's to restrict our trade which is a large concern to in n particular dairy producers. we have a multiple pronged approach to try to address this. first working with countries who are either engaging in negotiations with the eu or have concluded negotiations to articulate our concerns to make sure they understand the market access that we currently have and how that could be impacted. we are also engaging with our trading partners to ensure again
that this doesn't become a trade barrier and we are also engaging in multilateral forums about the issue so the wto, the asia-pacific economic cooperative forum, and then there is a world intellectual property organization as well we are engaging to make sure that intellectual property rights are being respected and that these are not becoming generic means that we use that are being used all over the world that do not become a barrier. >> i have one question which i will put in for the record having to do following up a little bit on the question about how we can expand export markets specifically looking at what we can do there more. >> absolutely. senator fisher. >> thank you madam chair and to the panelists who are here with
us today. trade is vital to nebraska's agricultural economy. valued at 6.5 billion in 2021. new and growing export markets drive the value back to rural america. the market access program and foreign market development programs are critical in helping the producers develop the new market. i agree with many colleagues today that as we look forward to the next farm bill it will be critical to ensure that the programs do continue. in order to fully realize the investment from those market development programs, the united states government has an important role to play. at a bare minimum, we must uphold the existing trade agreements and under secretary taylor, i did appreciate your remarks to senator grassley earlier that there is no negotiating on the bio and tech
corn because the science is clear on that. the livestock sector needs the corn but nebraska is also unique in that we grow half of the nation's food grade corn with mexico being our top expert expt market. i understand mexico's claim to the cultural reasons for wanting to ban imports. can you assure us that when you say there is no compromise with mexico on their attempts to ban biotech corn that that also includes the food grade white corn? the conversations i've had we talked about it broadly to include yellow corn and white corn.
others that have been studied for decades are not in question. >> i agree also on the point that this has a broader impact if we have a country that is coming in on a trade agreement they are not going to accept all the products that are safe that is a message we need to get out not just in the international trade but also here within the country so i appreciate you standing firm on that and making it clear safe, secure, help to feed the world we haven't
received a response yet from that. so, could you check on that and let us know how the administration plans to proceed? >> absolutely senator. >> you note in the testimony of the indo pacific economic framework there are meaningful opportunities to address the barriers and restrictions. addressing those items would be helpful however i've heard many producers concerned about the lack of any meaningful market access provisions as a part of the administrations trade agenda. so in your capacity as undersecretary, will you advocate the market access provisions specifically for agriculture are included as part of the negotiations?
>> i believe broadly the market access addresses the tariffs but also at the site of trade is critically important. doing one without the other doesn't often equate to market access. we have seen that around the world. while broadly it has been critical to u.s. agriculture there are parts that haven't felt that. also in the state of oregon about some of the challenges they experience, so what i would say is i am interested in pursuing trade policy that balances the need for the diverse agricultural producers in the country in pursuing new and diversified markets. >> thank you. i look forward to continuing the discussions on this in a special
thank you for really holding firm on the yellow quorum and white corn with mexico and my thanks to the secretary as well. >> senator klobuchar. >> thank you madam chair and i would add my thanks to senator fisher. minnesota is fourth in the country for exports. the hearing is important to us and i would also thank senator smith for her question on dairy. on the fact that we see room to grow with exports according to the 2021 study on the export market development program for every one dollar invested in the programs the export increased by $24 which is pretty incredible yet it found the programs are
underfunded. i know senator brown asked about this but can you talk about how we compare to other international trading partners? according to your testimony, the program for wine alone was greater than the entire budget of all of the market development programs. i think that should concern our colleagues when we look at a balance as much as we enjoy pairing up with the eu and drinking their wine. >> these programs are critically important and others around the world also have their own versions of programs to promote their own products and we are going head to head in many of the markets around the world competing. these tools that congress and the committee provided is critical to letting the producers get into the markets and to navigate often times complex regulatory systems and language barriers.
our programs mass alone while it's funded at $200 million on average we are seeing about $300 million of requests and i would say that is with industry self-regulating because we have limited funds and something similar in the foreign market development program. that program is funded at $34.5 million and we roughly get $50 million of requests so they are highly prescribed funds but highly leveraged as you point out the impact in return we receive is pretty impressive. >> the bill on opening up the market to cuba 95% of the customers living outside of the borders, absent lifting the embargo i am interested in what options usda has two facilitate.
have you considered allowing cuba to be part of the emerging-market program which would facilitate easier exports to cuba? i know that this has always been a bipartisan bill. >> i think cuba is an interesting market with untapped potential he and others huge challenges as well. in the 2018 farmville, it opened us to be allowed exclusively in cuba and we have seen some cooperators in the industry's products. i believe the emerging-market program did not encapsulate at the same authority to be granted to it so that is something we would be interested in exploring and as we work on reauthorizing the farm bill. >> this would be american products and as we know we were
making some headway there and we still have work to do on the human rights fund but i hope we can go back to looking at that and my last question number one turkey producer in the country. once again they've been significantly impacted by avian influenza that went better this time in terms of the quick response. as senator cornyn and i have worked on a vaccine bank and also on funding for these emergencies in the farm bill supported by all the members. as the outbreak continues because it is still going on, how is the usda adjusting to address and mitigate what's happening and specifically i know the impacted countries in the eu are considering implementing a vaccine strategy. what can be done in the farm bill to incorporate a vaccine strategy without impacting
trade? >> so, senator, i think as you mentioned it has gone better and we learned a lot of lessons from the outbreak in 2014 and 2015 that we spent the time since working with trading partners and with the world organization on animal health around the regionalization approach and science-based standards. i think we have seen a different reaction at this time then we did in 2014 and 15. we still have many challenges and so we are still working to lift restrictions that may be don't line up with the standards. this is a continued process of engagement, and i think a really important progress made things to technical colleagues but we
are going to have to continue to work at this. >> i'm not going to ask another question but i know you were asked about hemp and i remember senator mcconnell coming to the hearings for markups for the very same reasons including hemp provision but there continues to be confusion and frustration among the growers regarding the gaps in regulations and you are aware of the usda and i'm hoping we can fix those. thank you. >> thank you madam chair. i look forward to working with you on this important bill. agriculture in my state of alabama is the number one industry and we are proud of it. the problem we are having is as we've lost a lot of family farms in the state and i hope in doing this farmville what we would keep in mind what we are doing and how we are doing it for all but especially try to keep as many family farmers as we can.
most of my questions have been asked but i'm going to ask this question, the cotton producers now across southeast export most overseas in one form or another. do you have any new plans for these programs? >> senator, i think they are well-established programs and they have shown a a lot of success. i look forward to working with congress on any changes you may be thinking that from our perspective they are highly effective. >> so you are satisfied with them? >> yes, sir. >> the nurseries face the emerging threat of the box tree moth. they've begun to spread and it's the number one evergreen scrub crop and i'm told the usda
expects to be working well and with the horticulture industry for this. do you have any comments on this? >> thank you for the question and yes the inspection service has been working with of the industry to make sure we have movement control so we are containing where it is currently and also working to provide and also with canada so we have control and of the engagement with industry as you recognize is ongoing and that is a vital part of our responsive mechanism. >> as you know the grass is covering over 2,000 acres and 75% of the land and forest. it reduces productivity. what research are they doing to combat this? >> senator, that is a great question.
i can get more information and make sure we get back to you on that information. >> thank you madam chair. >> you are no longer at the end of the dais. you are moving quickly. >> first off thank you to your leadership and all the staff that are here and welcome to our colleagues as well i hope you all know we have a few things we love and one is chilly. i remind my parents they should be grateful to the seed they got for the chilly they brag about so long as they don't forget where it came from. the reason i bring that up is there are many challenges that keep facing new mexico in different parts of the country
when it comes to specialty crops. in our state not just our chilly but pecans, pistachios, onions matter to us. we have seen labor challenges throughout the country and we are doing that in new mexico as well. specialty crop matter to us, are critical and have the competitiveness. my question for the deputy secretary moffat, can you describe how the specialty crop block grant program is able to assist the industry and modernizing specialty crop harvesting with a lean towards mexico with a population we don't do as well as our other states in the region or across the country when it comes to
this program so i'm looking to see how we can learn more about strengthening them but ensure the producers like the ones we have in new mexico that they have access to these programs. >> senator, thank you so much for that question and your interest in the specialty block grant. what is very unique about the specialty grant is that the block grant component that is a specialty with agriculture so the state department of agriculture with usda work on identifying what are the critical needs in that state and really tailoring the grants that are administered in the states to form of the needs in that state so as you talk about the fund's research production particularly research writ large as well and we should certainly have the component of what the industry needs to enhance that competitiveness of a specialty crop. there's also the promotion and the specialty grant program and
education but given your question on the mechanization and the protection challenges that are unique to new mexico, it is a key part of how the specialty is designed with the block grant once the state is working with industry on what projects are really needed to advance and grow specialty crops in your state so i do look to leaning towards that. >> and in areas where new mexico hasn't been successful to the state department of agriculture and conjuncture of producers, we've not been successful is that in an area that we can work with you on to better understand how the application from the state can be improved so that it's more successful in the future? >> absolutely. we can work with the states directly. we would be happy to work also with your staff to validate those conversations. there's also a specialty crop multistate program where we can
address issues that have covered multiple states across the region or across the country in addressing different issues. >> i appreciate that. with the program are there any updates and areas to strengthen challenges that we now see over the last few years with any changes that we need? >> the progress continues as it has for some time. we are also always working on updating that. one of the big pieces we updated in the specialty crop program's information we get back from the recipients. reporting is important but making sure the reporting is not an increased burden on the recipients is the key part. it was the big update we did last year with the grant program. i also want to thank the committee as well as congress for the leadership during the pandemic and adding additional funds to the block grant to further enhance the growth specialty crops. >> i appreciate that. i have two other questions i
will submit into the record to be cognizant of time. in an area of a program we are proud of back in new mexico, numerous members have the cooperative agreement under the local food purchasing agreement planned that i want to pursue more and have a conversation about and then in the area of trade promotion, which i hope to visit more with ms. taylor about as well specific to the new mexico peacocks where i don't want to get in a fight with other states, but it's delicious if not more delicious as anywhere you go. we will lay it down and do it right, but there's some challenges the producers in new mexico have that other parts of the world where some states have done better and i won't get into why we are at the top of that list but i look forward to chatting more with you and i thank you. >> we are so glad you are going to be part of this important farm bill work that we are doing on the committee.
thank you. >> thank you madam chair. i'm from indiana which is the number one manufacturing state per capita in the country. wisconsin is right behind us. agriculture is right there behind it. i've been a tree farmer and involved in agriculture for a long time, owned a turkey farm for 32 years, half owner of it. in general what is upsetting agriculture more than anything, and i'm going to focus on especially the crop side of it i remember when you could put out an acre with direct input of soybeans for $70 an acre, 140 for corn. we are so far away from that, the high altitude of financial risk involved with farming across the spectrum is significant so we talked about u.s. mca and other things we depend upon expanding markets
across the world. if that doesn't happen with the help of our federal government, we are making the hardest job god created even more difficult. so keep that in mind in general. specifically, we are not the number one turkey producer but we are one of the top poultry producers in the country and avian flu is a big deal. i am part of legislation that wants to acknowledge that it's a known threat. we've been running into it far too often still uncertain how it happens, but we are getting a good idea. we ought to be certain about protocol when it does occur. so i'm introducing some legislation that would try to kind of regionally ban how were dealing it to where you are not holding a whole state at bay in the process of navigating through it and that is an issue
from ducks, turkeys, chickens in our state and it's going to be around so i want to make sure through this legislation that there's real definition on what happens to still be able to market your product once you know you have a case of it. tell me what you think about that, under secretary taylor and then i've got another question after that so maybe give me 30 seconds or so. >> thank you, senator. so i think we've done a lot of work with trading partners since 2014 and 2015. while we still have some challenges in some markets, the reaction globally has been drastically different. they didn't fold or hold the bands what we were seeing initially. we work with experts to keep the smallest regionalized geographic area possible depending on where those outbreaks are so i would offer our system working with you on the bill on how are our
trading partners might react but also obviously the experts on this disease would be critically important to say what is the science around how small the region that would make sense. we also have been working very closely with the world organization on animal health and have made great progress their own with the science says and with the appropriate standards are and that's helped us with our trading partners. >> i will hold you up to that and if you do that that will be good. to get this moving across the line. undersecretary, hemp has been something many farmers have been talking about trying to get into. there's so much uncertainty because we don't have a real established infrastructure for it. i think that's going to happen over time when you look at how big the industrial markets are on hemp across the world i think we need to start getting, senator tester and i got legislation to create a new
designation within the usda for a licensing framework for producers who only produce industrial hemp into the producers who opt into this program would be barred from harvesting flower and resin and in exchange would receive more regulatory certainty. again i would love to see how from the usda to give some certainty into what is a very kind of fragile and fledgling market is that something you would be comfortable with? >> senator thank you for that question and we are happy to engage with your staff as you develop this ability and provide technical assistance so that it's something we can work on implementation should the bill pass. >> by the way senator tester is one of the other few senators involved in agriculture. he still drives the tractor now. one final question one of the forest beside which often times
gets not the attention it should if it's a long-term product impacting forestry much more than it is. you've got chemicals in a defined field that generally get rid of them. stuff like silt grass, not to mention they have ash bore that's eliminated what was about 8% of our trees, ash trees. will the usda, and is the usda taking it seriously? because in a state like indiana when you get through the full foodchain about as much as the agricultural side would be and yet it seems you get a second fiddle in terms of attention. >> senator, thank you for that question. our primary concern i had the opportunity last year to visit the materials lab in
massachusetts out on the cape to learn about the work that's being done, the research that's being done. there are many as you described. the national forests and state forests have really been a critical part of the network and rural economy across america so we take forest tests very seriously and continue to do advanced research and work with our partners across the world in advancing that research to make sure we are not introducing new pests as well. >> thank you. >> thank you very much. senator hoven. >> thank you, madam chair and thank you to both you and the ranking member for holding the hearing today. appreciate it very much. under secretary taylor, and another question for you. thanks to all of you for being
here today. appreciate it. one of the programs that is it isimportant to us in north da is the sugar program. the red river valley that we share with the north and we share with minnesota it's about a 3 billion-dollar industry and obviously it's important that we pass and we get it right and i should also remind you that this is very important to the chair of the committee because we grow sugar beets in michigan, so i know that it's a matter of great importance to the chair man as well so want to make sure you are aware of that. but it's about a three billion-dollar -- >> and we all like sugar. [laughter] >> i know the ranking member is trying to downplay his concern on the program as well. i'm not sure they do sugar beets in arkansas but they do other things you'd like having us support them on their crops so he's a strong advocate as well.
but anyway, the policy is designed for a safety net for the sugar producers and it provides a low-cost consistent sugar price for american consumers. and it's very important that the programs administer in a way that's consistent in the farm bill so my question is do you agree the usda your own metric the stocks to use ratio between 13.5 to 15.5 is appropriate when determining when the sugar market is adequately supplying? i know that is technical but it's important for the producers. >> thank you, senator. so, the sugar program is being administered between myself under the trade in foreign agriculture and the undersecretary this is the new
structure as usda was reorganized several years ago with the creation of my position. i believe we have long administered the program. it is well known and it was developed to try to use the intent congress laid out about adequate supplies at reasonable prices in the farm bill. we are committed to using that metric to manage the sugar program. >> we actually had met with producers which we appreciate very much and i think it was productive for him to hear from them as well. but based on your answer then, when the markets adequately supply according to that measure, then you believe that we should not be allowing additional imports even though we get pressure from some of our partners to do that sometimes? as long as we are meeting those metrics?
>> correct, senator. that is how we have historically run the program and how we are running that program today because again we are trying to be transparent and how we are running the program into making those decisions. in addition, we have the agreement with mexico which lays out a tie to the ratio so i think that is an important component. >> glad you touched on that because we are always pushing to increase the imports into the market and i find that interesting at a time when they want to restrict the corn exports to mexico. so on the one hand we need to resist of that, the efforts to dump into our market and on the other hand they need to abide by wto when it comes to the sales of corn to mexico, do you agree with that? >> senator, i do believe that the provisions laid out within the u.s. mca west mexico
instance, they are projected at 5 million middle-class households over the next five years. we have the ability today to build trading relationships per trip or help our producers get into those markets. to build those long-term relationships and create lifelong consumers of american food and agricultural products. that is a huge market potential. we at usda are invested in these regions. our foreign agricultural service has teams on the ground in this region. we are working with u.s. exporters to get their products in. we focus many trait activities. and then we also had the indo pacific economic framework rate we are focused on meaningful access to knocking down those non- care for trade failures that are limiting factors today for we are interested to see where we can go to help advance
u.s. agriculture in the region. >> i joined with senator thune on the letter in regards to that. i have a very pithy question but i know our chairman being an expert on specialty crops will sufficiently grill you on that. i will pass on that and thank the chairman earth and for the ranking chairman. cook's look close with usb to the farm belt last certainly not least center boozman. >> thank you madame shared this is been an excellent hearing. and hopefully it is just the example of the hearings we are going to have in the future. like i said it has been excellent. the reason is so much of this is trade related bird 40% of the products are export. so we have to protect the markets that we have in again constantly look for new markets.
we are excited you are on board undersecretary tyler. unlike you cite such an important position. under secretary wheat farmers in arkansas are scarcely impacted by nds blatant violations. could you tell so little bit about what you all are doing and your partnership how you are able to take steps to hold india accountable. is there anything as a committee or congress can do to be helpful in that regard? i could make sure this egregious over subsidization. those words are not too strong i think everyone agrees to that how can we hold them accountable? quick thinking center boozman. we continue to engage india and
multi- lateral forms on this issue. raising questions within the wto working on anger notifications to bring out really what we view as the truth behind the policy here. i have been engaging with my team since i've been at usda on this topic as i committed to i would. and i think what we do have grave concerns us when we are looking at multiple approaches to try and address, but then again that multilateral forum to try and bring some resolution and certainty to our rice and wheat producers are seeing an impact from the subsidies. >> thank you. undersecretary moffat i want to acknowledge the incredible work that aphis does. we don't excellent job in ensuring the health and viability of u.s. agriculture
and agency's commitment to animal health protocols and standards necessary to facilitate market access for producers. let's undersecretary this is cannot with the issue. senator heidi smith laid it out very, very whale. the influenza outbreak, can you tell us again how we can help you, what you can do and also undersecretary taylor the whole deal, what can we do to push this forward? it really is kind of a common sense thing. what steps do we need to take to actually get this done so we can get poultry from these areas back in china and other countries? quick center boozman thank you
for that question and your recognition has done. we have had over eight haired employees deployed over the portion of the past year at 800 aphis employees this is in partnership with the states are also lockstep as well as the industry. an implementing bio security measures and relate tackling and making sure every time limit uptick stamp it out as quickly as possible to do exactly that. to make sure the disease is not spreading beyond the borders about that one operation. appreciate your recognition as the success this has had and thanks in large part to funding that was received in the farm belt taking lessons learned from the 2015 outbreak. we have been working across the world with national vets across the world. providing strong epidemiological
data. making sure that regionalization approach we've all agreed onto the world organization for animal health is being acknowledged and worked on. we are working on updating the work that we are doing so we are focused on the most at risk areas. the most at risk commercial operations so that we continue to advance and keep open as many markets as possible will continue to stamp out the disease. that strong relationship our veterinarian has with other national veterinarians has been able to keep open its undersecretary taylor mentioned keep open many markets we did not have open in the 2015 outbreak. >> very good. mrs. charles, again the focus is so much on trade. you have such an important mission. we are in a situation now or we have drawn down the emerson humanitarian trust for the first time in nearly 20 years.
first on urgent need for emergency commodities for this all kinds of issues going on. very quickly, can you talk to us a little bit how we can met during this period may be in the subcommittee we can have you back and really discuss this issue. and go forward. >> i would be happy to come back and talk in more detail at the subcommittee and work with you if you want to reauthorize the farm bill. i think we have a lot to be proud of over the last many years and in particular the last year with the authorities you all have provided with the supplemental funding that congress more brightly broadly has respond including using tools like humanitarian trust truly extraordinary year.
i think we can anticipate high levels of hunger in that year's account we would love to work with in greater flexibility to respond to that part. >> think all of you very much for the great work you've done. >> thank you so much. and thanks to each of you pretty very much appreciate your leadership and the roles that you are playing and having the opportunity to be here with us today. the trade and horticultural programs we discussed cover a lot of ground but one thing is very clear. these farm bill investments supports much needed economic opportunities both here at home and abroad for our farmers to very important part of the farm bill. look forward to work with center boozman as we craft these titles the record will remain open for five business days and the hearing is adjourned.
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