Crop insurance companies and their agents have spent years fighting off cuts in Congress or at USDA. Now, they're arguing limits imposed more than a decade ago are unfairly shrinking returns for specialty crop policies, a priority sector for policymakers, and appealing for an increase in federal reimbursement.
Controlled environment agriculture leaders see legislative updates and regulatory changes as key ways to help the expanding industry deliver local, healthy foods that also offer nutritional, environmental and economic benefits.
Department of Veterans Affairs healthcare systems in Houston and Salt Lake City will provide veterans with fresh fruit and vegetables as well as nutrition coaching to test whether produce prescriptions can improve the health of people with diet-related health conditions.
Specialty crop producers and a contract poultry grower used a farm bill listening session in Texas Wednesday to urge lawmakers to provide them with more insurance options, while groups representing other commodities continued their call for reference price increases consistent with inflation.
House Speaker Kevin McCarthy sends a message about the political significance of ag policy, sitting through the entirety of a House Agriculture Committee farm bill listening session in California and also fielding questions from reporters on a range of issues.
Senators on both sides of the aisle used a farm bill hearing Thursday to call for addressing the rising input costs faced by row crop producers and expanding crop insurance options for fruits, vegetables and other specialty crops.
USDA is promoting new crop insurance choices this year, even as strong commodity prices and elevated production costs are making existing coverage even more vital to farmers, says Marcia Bunger, administrator of the Risk Management Agency.