Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack says the Biden administration will be announcing new steps on agriculture and climate “very, very shortly” and also will start filling the department’s state-level leadership positions within days.
President Joe Biden has selected a veteran civil rights lawyer who teaches at the University of Michigan to lead the civil rights office at the Agriculture Department, which is under pressure to address long-standing complaints about discrimination.
House Democrats look to finish pulling together their $3.5 trillion tax and spending package this week, despite a fierce internal struggle over the taxes they need to pay for it and delays in finalizing $94 billion in agriculture provisions.
House Democrats are proposing historic funding for conservation programs, agricultural research, renewable energy and forestry and other climate-related priorities as part of a $3.5 trillion tax and spending package.
The Agriculture Department is increasing the amount of assistance available to drought-stricken cattle producers by adding coverage for feed transportation costs to the Emergency Assistance for Livestock, Honey Bees and Farm-raised Fish Program.
House Democrats are proposing a $35 billion expansion of child feeding assistance as part of their massive tax and spending package, and a lawmaker announced Wednesday that the measure also would include $1 billion in biofuel aid.
A broad array of contract livestock and poultry producers will be eligible for coronavirus relief and payment rules for specialty crop growers are being liberalized under rules changes made by the Agriculture Department.
The prolonged drought in the upper Midwest is dragging down crop yields by more than the government or traders expected, although U.S. farmers should produce 4% more corn and 5% more soybeans this year than they did in 2020, according to the Agriculture Department's first survey-based estimates of the fall harvest.