U.S. House panel echoes Senate, rejects Obama's food aid reform

decrease font size  Resize text   increase font size       Printer-friendly version of this article Printer-friendly version of this article

The U.S. House of Representatives panel in charge of agricultural funding rejected on Wednesday the Obama administration's request for a sweeping change to food aid programs that have been in place since the Cold War.

It was the second defeat in three days for the White House budget proposal to use up to 45 percent of funding for "Food for Peace," the major U.S. food aid program, to buy food from nations near hunger zones instead of American-grown food.

The White House in April proposed shifting Food for Peace funding to an international affairs panel and to make large purchases of food from suppliers closer to famine areas, so-called local and regional purchasing. Funds also could be used for food vouchers.

Its plan ran into a buzz-saw of lobbying by farm groups, food processors, shippers and others who favor the continued purchase of food in the United States and shipping it to needy countries on U.S.-flagged vessels.

The House Appropriations subcommittee on agriculture on Wednesday opted to keep Food for Peace under its control, and at the same time cut the program by 20 percent to $1.15 billion for the next fiscal year. A staff worker said the cut was part of controlling the federal deficit.

Connecticut Democrat Rosa DeLauro lamented the "outright rejection" of a proposal that she said deserved consideration.

The administration says local purchases would mean faster delivery of aid and at lower cost than shipping U.S. food thousands of miles.

The Senate voted on Monday to allow a small increase - $20 million - in local food purchase by the Agency for International Development but otherwise rejected the administration package.

Although the farm bills pending in the House and Senate would also keep Food for Peace in its current form, the administration still has a few chances to win its way.

Congress is in the early stages of writing government funding bills for fiscal 2014, which can be a vehicle to remodel programs. Leaders of the House Foreign Affairs Committee also filed a bill on May 22 to implement the White House proposal. It was sent to four committees for consideration.

The House Appropriations Committee may vote next week on a $139.5 billion funding bill for the Agriculture Department, the Food and Drug Administration and two financial regulators. That would be another opportunity for food aid reformers.

Among other actions taken at Wednesday's panel, the proposed Commodity Futures Trading Commission budget was set at $195 million for 2014, down $10 million from this year and a hefty $120 million less than the White House requested.

California Democrat Sam Farr argued that the CFTC deserved a larger work force to police the $300 trillion futures and derivatives markets.

Buyers Guide

Doyle Equipment Manufacturing Co.
Doyle Equipment Manufacturing prides themselves as being “The King of the Rotary’s” with their Direct Drive Rotary Blend Systems. With numerous setup possibilities and sizes, ranging from a  more...
A.J. Sackett Sons & Company
Sackett Blend Towers feature the H.I.M, High Intensity Mixer, the next generation of blending and coating technology which supports Precision Fertilizer Blending®. Its unique design allows  more...
R&R Manufacturing Inc.
The R&R Minuteman Blend System is the original proven performer. Fast, precise blending with a compact foot print. Significantly lower horsepower requirement. Low inload height with large  more...
Junge Control Inc.
Junge Control Inc. creates state-of-the-art product blending and measuring solutions that allow you to totally maximize operating efficiency with amazing accuracy and repeatability, superior  more...
Yargus Manufacturing
The flagship blending system for the Layco product line is the fully automated Layco DW System™. The advanced technology of the Layco DW (Declining Weight) system results in a blending  more...
Yargus Manufacturing
The LAYCOTE™ Automated Coating System provides a new level of coating accuracy for a stand-alone coating system or for coating (impregnating) in an automated blending system. The unique  more...
John Deere
The DN345 Drawn Dry Spreader can carry more than 12 tons of fertilizer and 17.5 tons of lime. Designed to operate at field speeds up to 20 MPH with full loads and the G4 spreader uniformly  more...
Force Unlimited
The Pro-Force is a multi-purpose spreader with a wider apron and steeper sides. Our Pro-Force has the most aggressive 30” spinner on the market, and is capable of spreading higher rates of  more...
BBI Spreaders
MagnaSpread 2 & MagnaSpread 3 — With BBI’s patented multi-bin technology, these spreaders operate multiple hoppers guided by independent, variable-rate technology. These models are built on  more...

Comments (0) Leave a comment 

e-Mail (required)


characters left

1325 Bushel Grain Cart

Equipped with a 22” computer balanced auger with 5/16” flighting,the unloading speed is 50% faster than smaller grain carts with ... Read More

View all Products in this segment

View All Buyers Guides

Feedback Form
Feedback Form