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 Collection: Congressional Research Service Reports
The National Bio- and Agro-Defense Facility: Issues for Congress
This report outlines current progress towards establishment of the National Bio- and Agro-Defense Facility (NBAF), presents current and projected funding levels and timelines, and describes policy issues of potential interest to Congress, such as agency coordination, possession of viruses, construction timelines, disposition of PIADC, and community safety concerns. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc94114/
The FY2009 Budget Request for the U.S. Department of Agriculture
The report discusses the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) budget request for FY2009. The request includes a $76 billion in mandatory funds for food stamps, child nutrition, and farm subsidies. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc94233/
Agroterrorism: Options in Congress
Although U.S. intelligence agencies have not identified any terrorist acts targeting agricultural production (i.e., agroterrorism) in the United States to date, the events of September 11, 2001 have awakened the nation to their possibility. Some experts estimate that a single agroterrorist attack using a highly contagious livestock disease could cost between $10 billion and $30 billion to the U.S. economy. This report examines the potential threats to America’s agriculture from a deliberate biological attack, describes the current defense structure and capabilities available to respond to agroterrorism, and analyzes current congressional proposals to address the threat of biological weapons to U.S. agriculture. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metacrs1384/
Agroterrorism: Options in Congress
Although U.S. intelligence agencies have not identified any terrorist acts targeting agricultural production (i.e., agroterrorism) in the United States to date, the events of September 11, 2001 have awakened the nation to their possibility. Some experts estimate that a single agroterrorist attack using a highly contagious livestock disease could cost between $10 billion and $30 billion to the U.S. economy. This report examines the potential threats to America’s agriculture from a deliberate biological attack, describes the current defense structure and capabilities available to respond to agroterrorism, and analyzes current congressional proposals to address the threat of biological weapons to U.S. agriculture. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metacrs2118/
Agriculture-Based Renewable Energy Production
Since the late 1970s, U.S. policy makers at both the federal and state levels have enacted a variety of incentives, regulations, and programs to encourage the production and use of agriculture-based renewable energy. Motivations cited for these legislative initiatives include energy security concerns, reduction in greenhouse gas emissions, and raising domestic demand for U.S.-produced farm products. This report provides background information on farm-based energy production and how this fits into the national energy-use picture. It briefly reviews the primary agriculture-based renewable energy types and issues of concern associated with their production, particularly their economic and energy efficiencies and long-run supply. Finally, this report examines the major legislation related to farm-based energy production and use. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metacrs8685/
The 1996 Farm Bill: Comparisons of Selected Provisions with Previous Law
Final congressional approval was given to H.R. 2854, the Federal Agricultural Improvement and Reform (FAIR) Act, otherwise known as the "1996 farm bill," on March 28, 1996. President Clinton signed the bill into law on April 4, 1996 (P.L. 104-127). In tabular format, this CRS report lays out in descriptive, rather than legislative language, the major provisions of the new farm bill in contrast to preceding law. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metacrs278/
The 2002 Farm Bill: Comparison of Commodity Support Provisions with the House and Senate Proposals, and Prior Law
A new farm bill, the Farm Security and Rural Investment Act of 2002 (P.L. 107- 171), covering crop years 2002-2007, was signed into law May 13, 2002. The previous farm bill (now prior law) was the Federal Agriculture Improvement and Reform Act of 1996 (P.L. 104-127), popularly called the FAIR Act. Commodity support authority in the FAIR Act (Title I, Agricultural Market Transition Act (AMTA)) was set to expire after crop year 2002. This report provides a side-by-side comparison of prior law (AMTA), with most commodity support provisions of Title I of the new law, and the House and Senate farm bills. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metacrs8625/
Rural Development and the 2007 Farm Bill
This report offers an overview and background information regarding the 2007 farm bill. It addresses emerging rural issues and rural programs administered by USDA. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc96786/
The 2008 Farm Bill: A Summary of Major Provisions and Legislative Action
The report discusses the 2008 farm bill (H.R. 2419), covering a wide range of programs including The Food, Conservation, and Energy Act of 2008, farm credit, agricultural conservation, research, rural development, and foreign and domestic food programs, among others. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc96768/
Country-of-Origin Labeling for Foods and the WTO Trade Dispute on Meat Labeling
This report covers the dispute between the U.S with its neighbors Canada and Mexico, who say that the recent country-of-origin labeling (COOL) system implemented by the U.S. Department of Agriculture is unfair and does not meet its original objectives. This dispute was brought before the WTO dispute panel and found to be valid. The report ends with a discussion of options for the U.S. in regards to modifying COOL to follow WTO rulings. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc96817/
Biotechnology: Commercialization of Academic Research
This report provides an overview of the commercialization of academic research h in the field of biotechnology. It offers a brief definition, background and policy analysis, as well as legislation and hearings regarding the topic. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metacrs8589/
Biotechnology in Animal Agriculture: Status and Current Issues
This report discusses the status and current issues regarding animal agriculture that is being transformed by rapid advances in biotechnology. This report will be updated as significant developments in agricultural biotechnology occur and as Congress develops legislation addressing emerging agricultural biotechnology issues. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metacrs8961/
Animal Agriculture: Issues in the 107th Congress
A variety of animal agriculture issues, including prices, the impact of consolidation in the meat production/packing industry, trade, and the environmental impacts of large feedlots, continue to generate interest in Congress. This issue brief discusses these issues, as well as the 2002 farm bill, which contains several provisions affecting animal agriculture, including protections for contract growers, disaster assistance, country-of-origin labeling, and increased funding for conservation purposes. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metacrs2082/
Animal Agriculture: Issues in the 107th Congress
A variety of animal agriculture issues, including prices, the impact of consolidation in the meat production/packing industry, trade, and the environmental impacts of large feedlots, continue to generate interest in Congress. This issue brief discusses these issues, as well as the 2002 farm bill, which contains several provisions affecting animal agriculture, including protections for contract growers, disaster assistance, country-of-origin labeling, and increased funding for conservation purposes. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metacrs2084/
Animal Agriculture: Issues in the 107th Congress
A variety of animal agriculture issues, including prices, the impact of consolidation in the meat production/packing industry, trade, and the environmental impacts of large feedlots, continue to generate interest in Congress. This issue brief discusses these issues, as well as the 2002 farm bill, which contains several provisions affecting animal agriculture, including protections for contract growers, disaster assistance, country-of-origin labeling, and increased funding for conservation purposes. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metacrs2086/
Animal Agriculture: Issues in the 107th Congress
A variety of animal agriculture issues, including prices, the impact of consolidation in the meat production/packing industry, trade, and the environmental impacts of large feedlots, continue to generate interest in Congress. This issue brief discusses these issues, as well as the 2002 farm bill, which contains several provisions affecting animal agriculture, including protections for contract growers, disaster assistance, country-of-origin labeling, and increased funding for conservation purposes. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metacrs2083/
Animal Agriculture: Issues in the 107th Congress
A variety of animal agriculture issues, including prices, the impact of consolidation in the meat production/packing industry, trade, and the environmental impacts of large feedlots, continue to generate interest in Congress. This issue brief discusses these issues, as well as the 2002 farm bill, which contains several provisions affecting animal agriculture, including protections for contract growers, disaster assistance, country-of-origin labeling, and increased funding for conservation purposes. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metacrs3705/
Animal Agriculture: Issues in the 107th Congress
A variety of animal agriculture issues, including prices, the impact of consolidation in the meat production/packing industry, trade, and the environmental impacts of large feedlots, continue to generate interest in Congress. This issue brief discusses these issues, as well as the 2002 farm bill, which contains several provisions affecting animal agriculture, including protections for contract growers, disaster assistance, country-of-origin labeling, and increased funding for conservation purposes. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metacrs3706/
Animal Agriculture: Current Issues
A variety of animal agriculture issues, including low livestock prices, the impact of consolidation in the meat packing industry, trade, and the environmental impacts of large feedlots, generated interest in the 106th and 107th Congresses. This report addresses this issues in detail. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metacrs1369/
Animal Agriculture: Issues for the 106th Congress
This report discusses a variety of animal agriculture issues that generated debate during the 106th Congress, including low livestock prices, especially for hogs. Economic difficulties have revived questions such as the impacts of consolidation in the livestock industry, and the price effects of animal imports from Canada and Mexico. This report also discusses a number of legislative proposals to assist livestock producers and enforce sanitary and phytosanitary standards, as well as continuing trade disputes and negotiations with China, the European Union, New Zealand, and Australia. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metacrs833/
Animal Agriculture: Issues in the 107th Congress
A variety of animal agriculture issues, including prices, the impact of consolidation in the meat production/packing industry, trade, and the environmental impacts of large feedlots, continue to generate interest in Congress. This issue brief discusses these issues, as well as the 2002 farm bill, which contains several provisions affecting animal agriculture, including protections for contract growers, disaster assistance, country-of-origin labeling, and increased funding for conservation purposes. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metacrs2085/
Average Farm Subsidy Payments, by State, 2002
The U.S. Department of Agriculture makes direct subsidy payments through the Commodity Credit Corporation to farmers for commodity price and income support, certain conservation and environmental activities, and some disaster losses. In 2002, these direct farm subsidy payments amounted to $12.151 billion. This report examines the distribution of these payments among states, calculates the average size of payments going to recipient farms in each state, and distinguishes between payments received by farm operators and landlords. This information is intended to aid in policy debates about subsidizing some farms but not others, changing per-person payment limits, and the altering eligibility rules for landlords to receive payments. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metacrs9086/
Avian Influenza: Agricultural Issues
Since the fall of 2003, a strain of highly pathogenic avian influenza (H5N1) has spread throughout Asia, infecting mostly poultry but also a limited number of humans. The virus reached Europe in 2005, and the Middle East and Africa in 2006. Avian flu is highly contagious in domestic poultry. Strict biosecurity measures are practiced by commercial poultry farms and encouraged by governments. The economic effects of avian flu outbreaks can be significant, especially given international trade restrictions. Controlling avian flu in poultry is seen as the best way to prevent a human pandemic from developing, by reducing the number of animal hosts in which the virus may evolve. This report mainly covers avian flu in poultry, and will be updated. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metacrs8934/
Avian Influenza: Agricultural Issues
Since the fall of 2003, a strain of highly pathogenic avian influenza (H5N1) has spread throughout Asia, infecting mostly poultry but also a limited number of humans. The virus reached Europe in 2005, and the Middle East and Africa in 2006. Avian flu is highly contagious in domestic poultry. Strict biosecurity measures are practiced by commercial poultry farms and encouraged by governments. The economic effects of avian flu outbreaks can be significant, especially given international trade restrictions. Controlling avian flu in poultry is seen as the best way to prevent a human pandemic from developing, by reducing the number of animal hosts in which the virus may evolve. This report mainly covers avian flu in poultry, and will be updated. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metacrs8895/
Cattle Prices: Questions and Answers
After 7 years of relatively high returns, cattle producers by 1994 were experiencing steeply falling prices--mainly caused by abundant supplies of cattle destined for U.S. feedlots. Record-high grain prices and dry pastures amplified the problem. Because of the lengthy biological cycle governing cattle production, large numbers will be coming onto the market for some time, as producers undertake the slow process of curtailing herd expansion. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metacrs290/
Grazing Fees: An Overview
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Tobacco Price Support: An Overview of the Program
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Tobacco Price Support: An Overview of the Program
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The Economics of Agricultural Policy
An English Act of 1663 imposed a duty on grain imported from abroad whenever the domestic price was below a legislatively set price floor. The English farmer enjoyed a virtual monopoly in the domestic market. By the same token, he was allowed to export grain whenever the domestic price exceeded the price floor, and, after 1673, was granted a bounty (subsidy) on grain exports. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metacrs21/
Conservation Reserve Program - Preliminary Results from the 15th Signup
This report includes a table listing, by state, the: Number of bids, or offers, received; Total acres offered for enrollment; Acres offered that are currently enrolled in the CRP; Acres offered are not currently enrolled in the CRP; Acres on which contracts expire on September 30, 1997; Percentage of acres currently in the program that were offered for reenrollment; and Percentage of acres offered that are not currently enrolled in the CRP. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metacrs376/
Survey of Grazing Programs in Western States
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Conservation Reserve Program: Status and Policy Issues
The Conservation Reserve Program (CRP), enacted in 1985, enables producers to bid to retire highly erodible or environmentally sensitive cropland, usually for 10 years. Participants receive annual rental and cost-sharing payments, and technical assistance to install approved plantings. Up to 36.4 million acres have been enrolled; current enrollment is estimated to be 32.9 million acres. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metacrs374/
Livestock Feed Costs: Concerns and Options
Sharply higher feed costs, fueled by competing use demands for corn and soybeans and by rising energy prices, are affecting the beef, pork, dairy, and poultry industries. In contrast, wholesales prices for most animal products have held steady. Some analysts argue that current public policies, including financial incentives that divert corn from feed uses into ethanol production, have exacerbated if not caused these higher costs. Other factors include crop production declines due to weather, and higher global demand for consumption. Proposed options aimed at easing the impacts of higher feed costs include changes in ethanol incentives, use of conservation land for forage use, and direct aid to producers. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metacrs10763/
Tobacco Control: Enforcement and Effectiveness of Federal and State Youth Access Laws
No Description digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metacrs515/
The U.S. Tobacco Industry in Domestic and World Markets
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Farm Commodity Programs: Sugar
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Pesticide Policy Issues
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Conservation Spending in Agriculture: Trends and Implications
Conservation spending under various federal agricultural statutes has increased since the early 1980s, and the mix of activities that are funded has changed during this time period. These funds have become an increasingly important source of income to farmers. This report examines conservation program funding since FY1983 in the context of both changing conservation policies and programs, and other farm program sources of income to farmers. This report will be updated if events warrant. Conservation Spending in Agriculture: Trends and Implications digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metacrs836/
Farm Commodity Payment Limits: Comparison of Proposals
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Farm "Counter-Cyclical Assistance"
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Farm "Counter-Cyclical Assistance"
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Farm Program Spending: What's Permitted Under the Uruguay Round Agreements
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Conservation Reserve Payments and Self-Employment Taxes
Farmers enrolling their land in the Department of Agriculture's Conservation Reserve Program (CRP) receive payments for refraining from farming their property and for engaging in certain conservation practices mandated by the Department of Agriculture. These payments are described in the contract with the Department of Agriculture as "rental payments." Farmers would like to treat the income as "rental income" because it would not be subject to self-employment taxes, but the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) insists that under certain conditions, the payments are income from the trade or business of farming and thus subject to self-employment taxes. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metacrs1066/
The Perishable Agricultural Commodities Act (PACA)
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Farmers' Markets: The USDA Role
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Farm Credit Services of America Ends Attempt to Leave the Farm Credit System
No Description digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metacrs9091/
Resource Conservation Title of the 2002 Farm Bill: A Comparison of New Law with Bills Passed by the House and Senate, and Prior Law
No Description digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metacrs8624/
Ethylene Dibromide (EDB)
Much attention has recently been focused on the chemical ethylene dibromide (EDB). This chemical has been widely used in leaded gasoline, and has also been used to treat grains, citrus and other crops. It has been found in foods and in groundwater. This paper examines the possible health effects of exposure to EDB, as well as its regulation. The possible health effects and regulation of various chemical and physical alternatives to EDB are also examined. This paper concludes with some policy considerations pertinent to EDB. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metacrs8714/
WTO Doha Round: The Agricultural Negotiations
This report assesses the current status of agricultural negotiations in the Doha Round of trade negotiations of the World Trade Organization (WTO); traces the developments leading up to the December 2005 Hong Kong Ministerial; examines the major agricultural negotiating proposals; discusses the potential effects of a successful Doha Round agreement on global trade, income, U.S. farm policy, and U.S. agriculture; and provides background on the WTO, the Doha Round, the key negotiating groups, and a chronology of key events relevant to the agricultural negotiations. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metacrs10355/
WTO Doha Round: The Agricultural Negotiations
On July 24, 2006, the WTO’s Director General announced the indefinite suspension of further negotiations in the Doha Development Agenda or Doha Round of multilateral trade negotiations. The principal cause of the suspension was that a core group of WTO member countries — the United States, the European Union (EU), Brazil, India, Australia, and Japan — known as the G-6 had reached an impasse over specific methods to achieve the broad aims of the round for agricultural trade: substantial reductions in trade-distorting domestic subsidies, elimination of export subsidies, and substantially increased market access for agricultural products. This report assesses the current status of agricultural negotiations in the Doha Round; traces the developments leading up to the December 2005 Hong Kong Ministerial; examines the major agricultural negotiating proposals; discusses the potential effects of a successful Doha Round agreement on global trade, income, U.S. farm policy, and U.S. agriculture; and provides background on the WTO, the Doha Round, the key negotiating groups, and a chronology of key events relevant to the agricultural negotiations. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metacrs9908/