NASDA members want more research, trade funding in ’23 Farm Bill

The CEO of the National Association of State Departments of Agriculture says the US has fallen behind in funding ag research and trade programs.

Ted McKinney tells Brownfield research funding for land-grant institutions was a low priority in the last two farm bills and hopes that changes in the 2023 legislation. “And we’re now seeing some laboratories in universities, in some departments of ag waning. As you try to recruit new employees, you always have to be doing that. We’re losing the opportunity to continue to bring good talent into the world of food and agriculture.”

He says the next farm bill should include an increase in market access and foreign market development funding even though there has been some progress on trade policy like conversations with the UK and Indio-Pacific framework. “There is good in the discussions that are taking place. We cannot dismiss that. But so too, you’re only as good as you can get tariffs reduced and other barriers removed, and only then can you compete on a level playing field with others around the world.”

McKinney says his members also support an adequate safety net in the 2023 Farm Bill.  

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