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 Collection: Congressional Research Service Reports
Farm and Food Support Under USDA's Section 32 Program

Farm and Food Support Under USDA's Section 32 Program

Date: August 26, 2005
Creator: Becker, Geoffrey S
Description: This report discusses "Section 32", which is a permanent appropriation that since 1935 has earmarked the equivalent of 30% of annual customs receipts to support the farm sector through a variety of activities. Today, most of this sizeable appropriation (totaling approximately $6 billion each year) is transferred to the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA’s) child nutrition account.
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Farm Bill Trade and Food Aid Provisions

Farm Bill Trade and Food Aid Provisions

Date: January 28, 2003
Creator: Becker, Geoffrey S
Description: This report discusses the trade provisions of omnibus farm legislation, passed and signed into law in May 2002. The measure includes a trade title reauthorizing, through 2007, the major foreign food aid and agricultural export programs. It also contains other provisions affecting agricultural trade, including new country-of-origin labeling requirements for meat, seafood, and produce; and increased domestic farm subsidies with possible implications for U.S. trade relations.
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Farm Bill Trade and Food Aid Provisions

Farm Bill Trade and Food Aid Provisions

Date: May 8, 2002
Creator: Becker, Geoffrey S
Description: This report discusses the trade provisions of omnibus farm legislation, passed in May 2002. The measure includes a trade title reauthorizing, through 2007, the major foreign food aid and agricultural export programs. It also contains other provisions affecting agricultural trade, including new country-of-origin labeling requirements for meat, seafood, and produce; and increased domestic farm subsidies with possible implications for U.S. trade relations.
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Farm Commodity Legislation: Chronology, 1933-98

Farm Commodity Legislation: Chronology, 1933-98

Date: February 9, 1999
Creator: Becker, Geoffrey S
Description: Farm commodity programs were a product of the Great Depression. This report discusses the history of farm commodity legislation. Since 1933, Congress has required the U.S. Department of Agriculture's (USDA's) Commodity Credit Corporation (CCC) to administer a variety of programs providing price support and income protection for the nations farmers.
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Farm Commodity Legislation: Chronology, 1933-2002

Farm Commodity Legislation: Chronology, 1933-2002

Date: May 31, 2002
Creator: Becker, Geoffrey S
Description: This report discusses legislation regarding commodities and price supports. Since 1933, Congress has required the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) to administer various price and income support programs for U.S. farmers. Some standing authority for these programs is provided by three permanent laws, from 1938, 1948, and 1949. However, Congress frequently alters the basic provisions of these laws. The omnibus law now guiding farm support (through 2007) is the Farm Security and Rural Investment Act of 2002.
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Farm Commodity Programs: A Short Primer

Farm Commodity Programs: A Short Primer

Date: February 7, 2005
Creator: Becker, Geoffrey S
Description: None
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Farm Commodity Programs: A Short Primer

Farm Commodity Programs: A Short Primer

Date: September 14, 2001
Creator: Becker, Geoffrey S
Description: This report briefly discusses programs designed to provide income support, price support, and/or supply management for approximately 20 specified agricultural commodities. USDA farm support programs represent the heart of U.S. farm policy, by virtue of their longevity – they have existed since the early 1930s – and their cost.
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Farm Commodity Programs: A Short Primer

Farm Commodity Programs: A Short Primer

Date: June 20, 2002
Creator: Becker, Geoffrey S
Description: This report briefly discusses programs designed to provide income support, price support, and/or supply management for approximately 20 specified agricultural commodities. USDA farm support programs represent the heart of U.S. farm policy, by virtue of their longevity – they have existed since the early 1930s – and their cost.
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Farm Program Spending: What's Permitted Under the Uruguay Round Agreements

Farm Program Spending: What's Permitted Under the Uruguay Round Agreements

Date: March 13, 2001
Creator: Becker, Geoffrey S
Description: This report discusses farm income and commodity price support proposals that might succeed the programs due to expire in 2002. A key question being asked of virtually every new proposal is how it will affect U.S. commitments under the 1994 Uruguay Round Agreement on Agriculture (URAA), which commitsthe United States to spend no more than $19.1 billion annually on domestic farm supports most likely to distort trade. The URAA spells out the rules for countries to determine whether their policies are potentially trade distorting, and to calculate the costs.
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Farm Support Programs and World Trade Commitments

Farm Support Programs and World Trade Commitments

Date: July 20, 2001
Creator: Becker, Geoffrey S
Description: Congress is now debating reauthorization of omnibus farm legislation, as most commodityprice support provisions expire in 2002. This report discusses this debate, specifically aspects relating to commitments that the U.S. has as a World Trade Organization (WTO) member. Because of the interrelationships between trade and domestic support policies, lawmakers are interested in what the Agreement on Agriculture stipulates with regard to domestic supports, and how not only the United States but also other countries are meeting their Agreement commitments.
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Farmers' Markets: The USDA Role

Farmers' Markets: The USDA Role

Date: January 3, 2006
Creator: Becker, Geoffrey S
Description: This report discusses federal programs aimed at promoting farmers’ markets. Policy issues include the extent to which the programs contribute to the markets’ success, and the need if any for additional governmental support.
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Federal Farm Promotion ("Check-off") Programs

Federal Farm Promotion ("Check-off") Programs

Date: May 3, 1996
Creator: Becker, Geoffrey S
Description: This report discusses legislation establishing national generic promotion ("check-off') programs for 20 specified farm commodities. Thirteen of the 20 authorized programs are now in effect.
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Federal Farm Promotion ("Check-Off") Programs

Federal Farm Promotion ("Check-Off") Programs

Date: May 24, 2005
Creator: Becker, Geoffrey S
Description: This report discusses the so-called beef check-off program, one of a number of generic promotion programs for beef and other agricultural products that Congress has authorized in recent decades. Supporters view check-offs as economically beneficial self-help activities that need minimal government involvement or taxpayer funding. Producers, handlers, and/or importers are required to pay an assessment, usually deducted from revenue at time of sale — thus the name check-off. However, some farmers contend they are being “taxed” for advertising and related activities they would not underwrite voluntarily.
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Horse Slaughter Prevention Bills and Issues

Horse Slaughter Prevention Bills and Issues

Date: November 7, 2005
Creator: Becker, Geoffrey S
Description: This report discusses the debate in Congress on whether to ban horse slaughter and the acceptability of this practice.
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Humane Treatment of Farm Animals: Overview and Selected Issues

Humane Treatment of Farm Animals: Overview and Selected Issues

Date: December 6, 1995
Creator: Becker, Geoffrey S
Description: None
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An Introduction to Farm Commodity Programs

An Introduction to Farm Commodity Programs

Date: July 20, 1994
Creator: Becker, Geoffrey S
Description: The U.S. Department of Agriculture's (USDA's) Commodity Credit Corporation (CCC) is required to provide assistance to 20 specified agricultural commodities, to achieve three primary objectives: to support prices, supplement incomes, and manage supplies. Supporters contend that financial help to the farm sector also ensures consumers an abundant supply of reasonably priced food. But critics believe that basic U.S. farm policies, conceived in the 1930s, no longer meet the needs of modern agriculture or society as a whole. This report discusses the various programs available for different commodities.
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Livestock Price Reporting: Background

Livestock Price Reporting: Background

Date: December 14, 2005
Creator: Becker, Geoffrey S
Description: None
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Livestock Price Reporting: Background

Livestock Price Reporting: Background

Date: September 23, 2005
Creator: Becker, Geoffrey S
Description: None
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Wheat, Feed Grains, Cotton, Rice, and Oilseeds Provisions of the Enacted 1996 Farm Bill

Wheat, Feed Grains, Cotton, Rice, and Oilseeds Provisions of the Enacted 1996 Farm Bill

Date: May 20, 1996
Creator: Becker, Geoffrey S
Description: None
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Agriculture: U.S.-China Trade Issues

Agriculture: U.S.-China Trade Issues

Date: October 16, 2002
Creator: Becker, Geoffrey S & Hanrahan, Charles E
Description: With China’s entry into the World Trade Organization (WTO) in December 2001, U.S. agricultural interests were hopeful that longstanding barriers to trade with that vast and growing market would begin to fall. However, critics charge that China is failing to honor commitments to open its markets, affecting U.S. exports of grains, oilseeds, meat and poultry, and other products. U.S. agriculture and trade officials have been working to resolve these differences.
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U.S. Agricultural Biotechnology in Global Markets: An Introduction

U.S. Agricultural Biotechnology in Global Markets: An Introduction

Date: June 19, 2003
Creator: Becker, Geoffrey S & Hanrahan, Charles E
Description: None
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U.S. Agricultural Biotechnology in Global Markets: An Introduction

U.S. Agricultural Biotechnology in Global Markets: An Introduction

Date: June 19, 2003
Creator: Becker, Geoffrey S & Hanrahan, Charles E
Description: None
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Regulation of Plant-Based Pharmaceuticals

Regulation of Plant-Based Pharmaceuticals

Date: March 8, 2005
Creator: Becker, Geoffrey S & Vogt, Donna U
Description: None
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Farm "Counter-Cyclical Assistance"

Farm "Counter-Cyclical Assistance"

Date: May 31, 2002
Creator: Becker, Geoffrey S & Womach, Jasper
Description: This report discusses recently approved legislation reauthorizing major farm income and commodity price support programs through crop year 2007. This legislation includes new “counter-cyclical assistance” programs for grains, cotton, oilseeds, peanuts, and milk. The intent of counter-cyclical assistance is to provide more government support when farm prices and/or incomes decline, and less support when they improve. In fact, farmers have, for many years, been eligible for various forms of counter-cyclical assistance. At issue has been the need for, and potential impacts of, another counter-cyclical program.
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