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 Collection: Congressional Research Service Reports
Agriculture and Related Agencies: FY2015 Appropriations

Agriculture and Related Agencies: FY2015 Appropriations

Date: October 22, 2014
Creator: Monke, Jim
Description: This report discusses various policy aspects of the Agriculture appropriations bill for FY2015, which funds the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA), except for the Forest Service.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
The Farm Safety Net: In Brief

The Farm Safety Net: In Brief

Date: October 21, 2014
Creator: Shields, Dennis A.
Description: This report discusses the several programs operated by The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) that supplement the income of farmers and ranchers in times of low farm prices and natural disasters. The programs are collectively called the farm safety net.
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Agricultural Disaster Assistance

Agricultural Disaster Assistance

Date: September 16, 2010
Creator: Shields, Dennis A. & Chite, Ralph M.
Description: This report has two sections. The first provides an overview of the current U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) disaster assistance programs: federal crop insurance, NAP payments, emergency disaster loans, the new Supplemental Revenue Assistance Payments Program (SURE), and four other smaller disaster programs authorized in the 2008 farm bill. The second section reviews the recent history of emergency supplemental farm disaster assistance.
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Animal Identification and Traceability: Overview and Issues

Animal Identification and Traceability: Overview and Issues

Date: November 29, 2010
Creator: Greene, Joel L.
Description: This report provides a summary of current developments in the U.S. Department of Agriculture's (USDA's) effort to establish a national animal traceability capacity with the intended goal of being able to rapidly identify and respond to an animal disease outbreak. National animal identification and traceability appear to have substantial economic value, yet federal proposals have proven controversial among certain segments of the U.S. cattle industry. This report provides background on animal ID and traceability in general, and the development of the current U.S. system of animal ID and traceability in particular. In addition, it reviews the claims and counter-claims of proponents and opponents of a national animal ID system, and describes many of the unresolved issues related to program development. Finally, two appendixes offer a brief chronology of the development of the U.S. National Animal Identification System (NAIS) and its successor program, and a brief description of the major international organizations involved in setting standards and rules for animal health and trade in animal products, along with summary descriptions of animal ID and traceability programs found in other major livestock producer and consumer countries.
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Biomass: Comparison of Definitions in Legislation Through the 111th Congress

Biomass: Comparison of Definitions in Legislation Through the 111th Congress

Date: January 6, 2011
Creator: Bracmort, Kelsi & Gorte, Ross W.
Description: This report discusses the use of biomass as an energy feedstock, which is emerging as a potentially viable alternative to address U.S. energy security concerns, foreign oil dependence, rural economic development, and diminishing sources of conventional energy. Biomass (organic matter that can be converted into energy) may include food crops, crops for energy (e.g., switchgrass or prairie perennials), crop residues, wood waste and byproducts, and animal manure. This report discusses legislation regarding biomass, the evolving definition of biomass, and the positions of supporters and detractors of biomass as an alternative energy source.
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Potential Trade Implications of Restrictions on Antimicrobial Use in Animal Production

Potential Trade Implications of Restrictions on Antimicrobial Use in Animal Production

Date: December 8, 2010
Creator: Johnson, Renée
Description: This report is organized into three parts. First, it provides an overview of U.S. export markets for livestock and poultry products, and highlights key U.S. foreign trading partners. Second, it discusses policies in selected foreign markets that may restrict or limit the use of antimicrobial drugs in food animal production, including imports of animal products grown with these drugs. Third, it discusses some implications of these policies for U.S. livestock and poultry exports to selected foreign markets.
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Food Safety on the Farm: Federal Programs and Legislative Action

Food Safety on the Farm: Federal Programs and Legislative Action

Date: December 15, 2010
Creator: Johnson, Renée
Description: In recent years, major outbreaks of foodborne illnesses, product recalls, and reports about unsafe food imports have caused some to question the adequacy of the U.S. food safety system. Stakeholders appear to agree that an optimal system should encompass a comprehensive, preventive approach to food safety, focusing on those foods and points in the food system that pose the greatest public health risks, starting at the point of production - that is, on farms and ranches. This report discusses differing opinions on this topic, as well as related legislation.
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U.S.-EU Poultry Dispute on the Use of Pathogen Reduction Treatments (PRTs)

U.S.-EU Poultry Dispute on the Use of Pathogen Reduction Treatments (PRTs)

Date: January 9, 2014
Creator: Johnson, Renée
Description: This report highlights the dispute between the U.S. and EU over the use of Pathogen Reduction Treatments (PRTs) during the processing of poultry products. PRT's are antimicrobial rinses--including chlorine dioxide, acidified sodium chlorite, trisodium phosphate, and peroxyacids, among others--that have been approved by the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) for use in poultry processing to reduce the amount of microbes on meat.
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Unapproved Genetically Modified Wheat Discovered in Oregon: Status and Implications

Unapproved Genetically Modified Wheat Discovered in Oregon: Status and Implications

Date: June 7, 2013
Creator: Cowan, Tadlock
Description: This report discusses the 2013 discovery of unapproved Genetically Engineered (GE) wheat in eastern Oregon and its effect on future policy considerations and regulatory structures in biotechnology.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
Emergency Assistance for Agricultural Land Rehabilitation

Emergency Assistance for Agricultural Land Rehabilitation

Date: December 11, 2012
Creator: Stubbs, Megan
Description: This report discusses the U.S. Department of Agriculture's (USDA) several permanently authorized programs to help producers recover from natural disasters. Most of these programs offer financial assistance to producers for a loss in the production of crops or livestock. In addition to the production assistance programs, USDA also has several permanent disaster assistance programs that help producers repair damaged crop and forest land following natural disasters.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department