The U.S. Meat Export Federation (USMEF), an organization charged with increasing the value and profitability of the U.S. beef, pork and lamb industries by enhancing demand in international markets, strongly supports The Agricultural Act of 2014 – the farm bill that was advanced from conference committee earlier this week and approved today by the House of Representatives on a vote of 251 to 166.
“USMEF commends the farm bill conference committee for finding the common ground necessary to advance legislation that will put in place for the next five years programs that are critical to U.S. agriculture and the rural economy, and we thank the House of Representatives for approving the bill,” said USMEF President and CEO Philip Seng.
Seng noted that the new farm bill fully funds the USDA Market Access Program (MAP) and Foreign Market Development (FMD) program, which represent important investments in U.S. agricultural exports.
“Exports are extremely important to the profitability of our nation’s farmers and ranchers, and the strong, bipartisan support for the MAP and FMD programs in both houses of Congress is very gratifying,” he said. “Many agricultural organizations have been working to educate legislators on the importance of these programs and the positive effect they have on their members’ bottom line, and those efforts certainly had a positive impact on the farm bill debate.”
The farm bill also directs USDA to develop a reorganization plan that includes a new undersecretary for trade and foreign agricultural affairs – a provision strongly supported by USMEF.