Ag trade nominee’s plan: ‘Break down the barriers’
Doug McKalip told senators that if he’s confirmed as U.S. chief agricultural negotiator, “it will be my duty to break down the barriers” to U.S. food and ag exports. During a friendly and relatively brief confirmation hearing on Thursday before the Senate Finance Committee, he pledged to press U.S. trade partners to live up to existing agreements.
With Senate pact, climate-focused farm bill becomes possible
Farm-state lawmakers would have the funds to write a climate-focused farm bill if Congress enacts a broad-ranging package that President Biden on Thursday called “the most significant legislation in history to tackle the climate crisis.” The package includes $20 billion for voluntary conservation practices on the farm to sequester greenhouse gases in soils, plants, and trees.
TODAY’S QUICK HITS
Speculation roils wheat markets: Some analysts say the startling speed and extent of price increases for wheat this past spring can’t be explained by the Ukraine war or by supply and demand on agricultural markets. (Mongabay)
Put CBD in farm bill: Leaders of the industrial hemp sector said the 2023 farm bill should include regulatory language for CBD that would help bring hemp-derived products out of the gray market. (U.S. Hemp Roundtable)
Climate proposals: There were more than 400 submissions in the second round of proposals to share $1 billion of USDA funding for projects that meet or expand demand for climate-smart commodities. (Natural Resources Conservation Service)
Outlook for aggies: Although the general election outlook for Rep. Sanford Bishop, chair of the House Appropriations subcommittee on USDA funding, has improved to “likely Democratic,” the forecast for House Agriculture Committee member Jahana Hayes has softened to “leans Democratic.” (Sabato’s Crystal Ball)
New staff director: Erica Chabot, legislative director and deputy chief of staff for retiring Sen. Patrick Leahy of Vermont, was appointed majority staff director for the Senate Agriculture Committee, said chair Debbie Stabenow. (Senate Agriculture)