Federal Farm & Food Policy
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MRCC members work for federal farm and food policies that support independent family farmers and rural communities and ensure access to affordable, high-quality food raised by independent farm families. This includes challenging corporate control over the marketplace, agricultural industry and policy formation.
Our federal farm and food priorities are primarily focused on efforts to improve livestock competition, expose and challenge taxpayer-funded corporate subsidies, address food safety, security and nutrition programs and positively influence Farm Bill debates and subsequent implementation.
At stake is the future of large parts of America’s rural environment, the health and prosperity of rural communities, economic opportunity for farm and rural families, and far-reaching questions about food safety and affordability.
Federal Policy Issues
Federal International Trade Policy
- So-called “free trade agreements” have dramatically increased the profits of multi-national corporate agribusinesses, meatpackers, grain-traders and seed companies at the expense of U.S. farmers & farmers around the world.
- These trade deals take power away from our local & state elected representatives & puts decision-making power into the hands of an international unelected, unaccountable body—a virtual corporate, global constitution.
- The real story can be seen out our windows, on our Main Streets and in the growing average age of the U.S. farmer because their children can’t afford to come back to the farm.
- Since NAFTA, our country has lost two-thirds of our hog producers and one-quarter of our cattle producers. For grain producers, the situation isn’t much better — prices paid to farmers haven’t risen because of free trade agreements, and taking into account increased input costs and inflation have decreased significantly.
- Since NAFTA, imports of agricultural goods into the U.S. have skyrocketed.
- The fact is, “free trade” is a race to the bottom for farmers in the U.S. and in our partner countries.
- Following NAFTA, global grain trading corporations flooded Mexico with below cost-of-production corn, and, as a result, an estimated 2 million Mexican farmers were put out of business, many were forced to move across the border for work. When we talk about immigration, we cannot ignore NAFTA and its consequences.
Country of Origin Labeling (COOL)
COOL allows consumers to know where the meat on the grocery store shelves is from, and to choose meat that is born, raised and processed in the U.S.
Mandatory COOL was implemented in 2009 and led to a steady increase in fed cattle until its repeal in 2015. Immediately after COOL was repeal, American cattle producers saw a 34% drop in price in one year.
Ever since COOL was passed in the 2008 Farm Bill at the request of family farm organizations like MRCC, the multi-national meatpackers and the National Cattlemen’s Beef Association (NCBA) conducted an all-out attack on COOL and successfully got it repealed by Congress in 2015.
MRCC members are continuing to demand that Congress pass and reinstate Country of Origin Labeling because of its importance to both Missouri farmers and consumers. We must continue to keep the pressure on policymakers to ensure the right of consumers to know where their meat comes from.
Federal Farm Bill
Congress passes a new Farm Bill every 5 years (or so). Farm Bills have a large impact on family farmers, the food they grow, how they grow it. It also dictates crop insurance, subsidies, food assistance, trade policy, conservation programs, food diversity and much much more.
The first Farm Bill was passed in1933 as part of President Franklin D. Roosevelt’s’ New Deal’. The original purpose of the bill was to keep both prices paid to farmers and prices paid by consumers fair, ensure an adequate food supply, and sustain and protect vital natural resources.
The Farm Bill enacted in December 2018 had a budget of $428 Billion from FY 2019-FY 2023.
Please Call YOUR Congressperson and Senator Blunt & Senator Hawley:
Tell them that American farm families & consumers have a right to know if their meat is raised, slaughtered and processed in the United States or not—protect our right to know and reinstate Country of Origin Labeling.
Call your Congressperson by calling the Capitol Switchboard with your zip code at (202) 224-3121.
Call Senator Blunt at (202) 224-5712
Call Senator Hawley at (202) 224-6154
Other Federal Farm Issues
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Discover More About Federal Farm and Food Policy
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Why Join MRCC’s Membership
MRCC is able to deliver meaningful victories because of the ability to call people into action with mailings, meetings, phone calls, research, and action alerts. By joining MRCC, you are investing in your future and the future of independent farmers and consumers across the country.
- Support Family Farmers and Rural Community
- Promote a safe, affordable high-quality food supply for consumers.
- Protect the environment for future generations.
- Create economic opportunities for Missouri.
- Engage Missourians in the democratic process.