USDA announces tariff mitigation for agriculture
On July 24, U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue announced that the USDA was implementing a trade mitigation program to provide aid to agriculture industries impacted by the ongoing tariff issues. The deal has three programs:
- The Market Facilitation Program, authorized under The Commodity Credit Corporation (CCC) Charter Act and administered by Farm Service Agency (FSA), will provide payments incrementally to producers of soybeans, sorghum, corn, wheat, cotton, dairy, and hogs. This support will help farmers manage disrupted markets, deal with surplus commodities, and expand and develop new markets at home and abroad.
- Additionally, USDA will use CCC Charter Act and other authorities to implement a Food Purchase and Distribution Program through the Agricultural Marketing Service to purchase the unexpected surplus of affected commodities such as fruits, nuts, rice, legumes, beef, pork and milk for distribution to food banks and other nutrition programs.
- Finally, the CCC will use its Charter Act authority for a Trade Promotion Program administered by the Foreign Agriculture Service (FAS) in conjunction with the private sector to assist in developing new export markets for our farm products.
The total investment for all three programs will be $12 billion. The pistachio industry will qualify for the Food Purchase and Distribution Program and the Trade Promotion Program, but not the Market Facilitation Program.
In an effort to ensure that the pistachio industry is a beneficiary of the Food Purchase and Distribution Program, the Administrative Committee for Pistachios submitted a letter on behalf of the industry to USDA.