Rep. Austin Scott, Chairman of the House Agriculture Committee's Subcommittee on Horticulture, Research, Biotechnology and Foreign Agriculture, held a public hearing to review the impact of enforcement activities by the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) on specialty crop growers. Specifically, Subcommittee Members addressed growing concerns that DOL is using the "Hot Goods" provision under the Fair Labor Standards Act of 1938 (FLSA) in an arbitrary manner against producers of perishable agricultural commodities without regard for the inevitable destruction of the product and significant economic hardship inflicted on farmers and their employees.
Agriculture Subcommittee Hears Concerns From the Pork Industry about Dire Economic Conditions
Tamara Hinton (202) 225-0184
WASHINGTON – Today, the House Agriculture Subcommittee on Livestock, Dairy, and Poultry held a hearing to examine the economic conditions facing the pork industry. Members of the Subcommittee heard testimony from the Deputy Under Secretary of the U.S. Department of Agriculture as well as from pork producers, processors, and industry experts about the complex set of circumstances that have led to the troubling economic situation for the pork industry.
Rep. Bob Goodlatte (R-VA) issued the following statement regarding the hearing.
"Today's hearing told a story of difficult economic conditions for the pork community. The causes are many and varied. As we go forward, we should keep today's hearing in mind as we consider the cost to struggling farmers of policy proposals like cap and trade, food safety, health care, antibiotic legislation, energy policy, animal welfare, industry structure, and tax law.
"It is important for us to pay particular attention to the adverse effects on producers that are a result of government action. Actions such as trade policies and additional regulatory burdens like mandatory country-of-origin labeling do not help and in many cases only hurt this industry and others in agriculture."