New legislation introduced by Rep. Austin Scott (R-Ga.) would give a much-needed boost to the Commodity Credit Corporation. Micheal Clements shares more on how the increased funding could help agriculture.
Clements: Legislation recently introduced in the House of Representatives would expand Commodity Credit Corporation borrowing authority from $30 billion to $68 billion. AFBF Congressional Relations Director Andrew Walmsley says this would be the first CCC funding increase since 1987.
Walmsley: The $68 billion would be what inflation adjusted numbers would be for the Commodity Credit Corporation, which has been a vital tool in the administration of farm programs. More recently, we’ve seen it utilized for Market Facilitation Payments, along with needed emergency assistance to producers through the Coronavirus Food Assistance Program.
Clements: With potential new uses for the CCC under the Biden administration, Walmsley says it is important there is enough funding for all CCC programs.
Walmsley: As more demands are put on the Commodity Credit Corporation, we want to ensure there’s enough funding for those core programs. The new administration, they’re looking at maybe some new practices around climate smart agriculture, so to allow the Secretary to have those flexibilities, to make sure there is enough resources there for all the needs of agriculture, we think it’s time to update the borrowing amount within the CCC.
Clements: Walmsley says CCC funding is a critical tool for agriculture.
Walmsley: At the end of the day, farmers and ranchers want to find markets, but when your business partner is mother nature and you’re dealing in a global economy, having some risk management tools at the disposal of USDA probably isn’t a bad idea to ensure we continue to have the most affordable and safe food supply on the planet.
Clements: Micheal Clements, Washington.