Farm Bill Approved by House Agriculture Committee

April 26, 2018

Earlier this month, the House Agriculture Committee released its draft of the 2018 Farm Bill. The bill includes support for animal health, food safety, and market access programs for farmers.

Throughout the Farm Bill process, UEP and the Animal Ag Coalition have expressed the need for support for animal health and disease prevention programs. Currently, the House Agriculture Committee’s draft of the 2018 Farm Bill includes $450 million in funding for the animal disease and disaster response program as well as a foot and mouth disease (FMD) vaccine bank.

The bill was approved in a 26-to-20 vote on party lines and the House Agriculture Committee moved to advance the bill to the House Floor.

On the Senate side, several members have written to Chairman Pat Roberts and Ranking Member Debbie Stabenow in support for authorization of programs that address risks to animal health and industry economic stability. The letter explicitly outlines the importance of an FMD vaccine bank and animal disease and disaster response programs, urging the Chairman and Ranking Member to include appropriate language.

UEP strongly supports the provisions made in the House Agriculture Committee’s bill and will continue efforts to ensure UEP priorities are considered in the Senate bill.

King Amendment Attached to House Farm Bill

The King amendment received a voice vote by the House Agriculture Committee to be included in the 2018 house version of the Farm Bill. This amendment is self-described to, “… stop states from regulating the production and manufacturing of agricultural products across state lines.” The amendment, only applies to agricultural products and notes a state, or a locality therein, may not impose standards above those of federal law or another state in which the product is produced.

The King amendment was one of only two, outside of the En Bloc Amendments, to be included in the Farm Bill. The other prohibits the slaughtering of dogs and cats for human consumption. Representative King, from Iowa proposed a similar amendment that was included in the 2013 version of the Farm Bill. That amendment made it out of committee, but was not included in the final version of the Farm Bill.

Click here for a summary of the April 18 House Agricultural Committee Farm Bill meeting and proposed amendments from Cornerstone Government Affairs.