Subcommittee Examines International Market Development
Today, Rep. David Rouzer (NC-7), Chairman of the House Agriculture Committee’s Subcommittee on Livestock and Foreign Agriculture, held a hearing to examine the international market development programs administered by the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) Foreign Agricultural Service. Members heard from a variety of witnesses in the agricultural industry who discussed the critical nature of these programs in increasing and enhancing access to overseas markets. The hearing was a continuation of the committee’s hearing series on the next farm bill.
“It is important that we recognize the overarching benefits that market development funding brings the U.S. agricultural industry as a whole—benefits to American farmers and small businesses that would not be otherwise achieved. These USDA programs continue to facilitate our farmers’ and ranchers’ efforts to reach new markets and have proven invaluable in helping to level the playing field within those global markets. We must continue to invest in these programs so demand for U.S. food and fiber continues to grow and American agriculture remains strong,” said Subcommittee Chairman Rouzer.“Our competitors are outspending us on export promotion programs by a huge margin. Couple that with a host of countries who continue to employ trade distorting domestic policies with no regard to their WTO commitments, and it is easy to see why it is becoming harder and harder for our producers to compete on the global stage. International market development programs like the Market Access Program and the Foreign Market Development program are essential tools in helping to overcome such obstacles. I am impressed by the work made possible through these programs, and I look forward to ensuring they are being used as efficiently as possible to promote superior quality American agricultural products around the world,” said Agriculture Committee Chairman K. Michael Conaway.
Written testimony provided by the witnesses from today’s hearing is linked below. Click here for more information, including Subcommittee Chairman Rouzer's opening statement and the archived webcast.
Dr. Gary Williams, Professor of Agricultural Economics & Co-Director of the Food, Agribusiness and Consumer Economics Research Center, Texas A&M University, College
Mr. Joseph Steinkamp, Director, American Soybean Association, Evansville, IN; on behalf of the Coalition to Promote U.S. Agriculture Exports and the Agribusiness Coalition for Foreign Market Development
Mr. Tim Hamilton, Executive Director, Food Export-Midwest and Food Export-Northeast, Chicago, IL
Mr. Philip Seng, President & CEO, U.S. Meat Export Federation, Denver, CO
Mr. Dean Alanko, Vice President of Sales and Marketing, Allegheny Wood Products, Petersburg, WV; on behalf of the Hardwood Federation
Mr. Paul Wenger, almond grower and President, California Farm Bureau, Sacramento, CA