The inbox is filling with largely positive reaction to the Senate passage of the farm bill. Here are some excerpts from around the industry and the ag community:
Senate Committee on Agriculture, Nutrition and Forestry Chairwoman Debbie Stabenow
“This Farm Bill is the most significant reform to farm programs in decades—it cuts spending, ends subsidies, improves accountability and strengthens healthy food systems. This bill was developed through bipartisan collaboration, passed committee with broad bipartisan support, and we have now passed a bipartisan bill that supports 16 million American jobs. It is heartening to earn support from both sides on a major bill that cuts spending and helps create jobs. Passage of this bill shows that when people come together, Congress can still get big things done.”
“I want to thank my Ranking Member Senator Pat Roberts for his leadership and commitment to working on behalf of American agriculture and to my colleagues in the Senate for voting on behalf of the 16 million American jobs that rely on a robust, innovative and strengthened agriculture sector. I look forward to continuing to work in a collaborative and bipartisan way to see that this reform bill is signed into law.”
Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack
"I’m very pleased that the Senate acted in bipartisan spirit today to approve the Agriculture Reform, Food and Jobs Act. I am grateful for the Senate’s progress toward providing a reformed safety net for producers in times of need, supporting agricultural research and trade promotion, honoring World Trade Organization commitments, furthering the bio-based economy, conserving our natural resources, strengthening local and regional food systems, and promoting job growth in rural America.
United Fresh Produce Association Chairman Tom Stenzel
“We congratulate the Senate Agriculture Committee and Senate Leadership for prioritizing this legislation which is so important to the nation’s produce providers. The bill supports fruits and vegetables in ways that will boost consumption and help provide healthful options to Americans – through block grants, nutrition programs and pest and disease research. We’re looking forward to working with the House to preserve funding for these critical fruit and vegetable programs.”
Produce Marketing Association President Bryan Silbermann
“PMA commends the Senate for their attention to the needs of specialty crops throughout the 2012 farm bill. This success would not have been a reality without the leadership of Senator Debbie Stabenow of Michigan, and chair of the Senate’s Agriculture Committee, who continued the breakthroughs for specialty crops made in the last farm bill, but in a far more difficult budgetary environment. The efforts of the Specialty Crop Farm Bill Alliance also deserve recognition, once again successfully advocating for the inclusion of programs targeted to the needs of produce and other specialty crops.