NATIONAL AG NEWS SPONSORED BY THE AMERICAN FARM BUREAU FEDERATION

National Ag News for January 18, 2023

US, EU Sign Tariff Rate Quota Agreement

U.S. and European Union trade leaders Tuesday signed the U.S. – EU Tariff Rate Quota Agreement. The agreement, once implemented, will enable the United States to preserve its existing access to the EU market for various agricultural commodities following the United Kingdom’s exit from the EU on January 1, 2021. The new Tariff Rate Quota allocations are based on the historic pattern of agricultural exports to the 27 European Union Member States. The agreement will restore favorable market access for multiple U.S. agricultural products, including for U.S. rice, almonds, wheat, and corn, according to the U.S. Trade Representative’s Office. In the first eleven months of 2022, the United States exported $11.1 billion worth of agricultural goods to the European Union. Trade Representative Katherine Tai, Sweden’s Permanent Representative to the European Union, Ambassador Mikael Lindvall, and European Commission Deputy Director General for Agriculture and Rural Development, Michael Scannell, signed the agreement.

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House Ag Committee Republicans Set Roster

House Agriculture Committee Republicans started the week by announcing the committee’s Roster for the 118th Congress. Glenn GT Thompson of Pennsylvania serves as the chair of the committee. The roster features 12 new members, which includes returning member Frank Lucas of Oklahoma. Lucas previously chaired the committee from 2011 – 2015. Lucas led the committee during the development of the 2014 Farm Bill. Other notable new members include John Duarte of California and Mark Alford of Missouri. Duarte was the subject of a high-profile lawsuit filed by the Environmental Protection Agency under the Clean Water Act. The dispute ended in 2017 with Duarte agreeing to pay a civil penalty and preserve and restore streams and wetlands on his farm. Alford, a new member of Congress, ended a career as a Kansas City area news anchor to run for Congress. Additionally, 15 members return to the committee after serving in the previous Congress.

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NASDA Sets 2023 Policy Priorities

Press The National Association of State Departments of Agriculture Tuesday announced the organization’s primary policy focus for 2023. NASDA members, the state commissioners, secretaries and directors of agriculture, hand-selected seven issues to focus on. The issues include the 2023 Farm Bill, which NASDA says must remain unified, securing a commitment to American agriculture and the critical food and nutritional assistance programs for those who need it most. As for environmental regulations, NASDA supports the science-based and comprehensive regulatory framework the Federal Insecticide, Fungicide, and Rodenticide Act provides to ensure environmental and public health protection. Regarding the recently published “waters of the U.S.” rule, NASDA will continue to impress the role of states in regulating non-navigable waters. Other priorities include food production and the supply chain, food safety, animal health, international trade and workforce development. NASDA CEO Ted McKinney says, “We believe these are the areas where state departments of agriculture are uniquely positioned to lead impact and direct policymaking solutions this year.”

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Rural Job Growth Shifting to High-skill Workers

Over the last two decades, the strongest rural job gains were in smaller industries that tend to employ high-skill workers. USDA Economic Research Service reports the highest growth was in the real estate industry. Also showing rapid growth was the administrative services industry, which includes office administration, facilities support, business support services, security services, conventions and trade shows, and waste management and treatment. Other rural industries that grew over the past two decades were health care and social assistance; professional, scientific, and technical services; educational services; and finance and insurance. The growth of these industries represented a shift in rural production toward industries that employ higher shares of high-skill workers. Consistent with this shift, the percent of rural college-educated workers increased from 21.5 percent in 2012 to 23.8 percent in 2019. However, these rates have remained lower than the share of college-educated urban workers, at 38 percent in 2019.

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House Ag Chair to Keynote Plant Based Product Council Conference

House Agriculture Chairman Glenn GT Thompson will keynote the inaugural Plant Based Products Council Annual Conference in March. The Pennsylvania Republican will share remarks on Congress’ priorities for the 2023 Farm Bill, growing the bioeconomy, rural economic development, and fostering innovation in agriculture. PBPC Executive Director Jessica Bowman says, “We are excited to convene Chairman Thompson and other policy and industry leaders to drive this industry forward.” PBPC2023 will take place at the JW Marriott in Washington, D.C., from Monday, March 27, to Wednesday, March 29, 2023. The association’s inaugural conference will explore the innovations, business models, and policies influencing the entire lifecycle of bioproducts in support of a robust circular economy. Attendees will hear from and network with industry leaders, policymakers, brands, and experts through panels, keynotes, networking sessions, and more. Learn more about the Plant Based Products Council and its inaugural annual conference at www.pbpc.com.

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USDA Introduces an E-Application for the 1890 National Scholars Program

The Department of Agriculture Tuesday unveiled a new e-application for the USDA/1890 National Scholars Program. The program aims to encourage students at 1890s institutions to pursue food and agriculture career paths. For the first time, the new e-application for the USDA/1890 National Scholars Program allows young people around the country to complete and submit their applications online. The program is administered through USDA’s Office of Partnerships and Public Engagement. The USDA/1890 National Scholars Program is a partnership between USDA and the country’s 19 historically Black land-grant universities that were established in 1890. USDA partners with these 1890 universities to provide scholarship recipients with full tuition, fees, books, room, and board. Scholarship recipients attend one of the 1890 land-grant universities, and pursue degrees in agriculture, food, natural resource sciences, or related academic disciplines. The scholarship also includes work experience at USDA. The application deadline is Wednesday, March 15, 2023. For more information, contact 1890init@usda.gov.

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By Tucker Allmer - The BARN

Tucker Allmer & the BARN are members of the National Association of Farm Broadcasting (NAFB), the Colorado FFA Foundation, the Colorado 4H Foundation, the Colorado Farm Show Marketing Committee, 1867 Club Board Member, Denver Ag & Livestock Club Member, the Weld County Fair Board, the Briggsdale FFA Advisory Council, Briggsdale 4H Club Beef Leader & Founder / Coordinator of the Briggsdale Classic Open Jackpot Show.

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