House Agriculture chairman Collin Peterson floated a bill on Wednesday to keep local USDA offices open during any future government shutdowns. “There’s no sense not to have them working,” he said. “Couldn’t agree more,” responded Sonny Perdue.
With the shutdown behind it, the USDA will begin today to clear out a month's worth of backlogged data, including major reports that could jolt commodity markets and color farmers' decisions on crops to plant this spring. Chief economist Robert Johansson said there will be one exception — the globe-spanning WASDE report that serves as a monthly crop report for the world.
U.S. farmers may receive noticeably less in Trump tariff payments than originally expected, a senior USDA official said on Thursday. And with no end in sight for the five-week partial government shutdown, Iowa Sen. Chuck Grassley told reporters that food stamps could be in jeopardy.
Federal meat inspectors are reporting to work without pay during the partial government shutdown, said an industry trade group on Wednesday, as the USDA called on 9,700 furloughed FSA employees to reopen offices nationwide today to serve farmers and ranchers.
Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue set a new deadline of February 14 for producers to apply for Trump tariff payments, while announcing on Tuesday that USDA’s so-called county offices will be open for many, but not all, services during the partial government shutdown. Meanwhile, concern rose …
About half of the USDA’s local offices will be open for three days, beginning Thursday, to deal with existing farm loans and provide tax documents to farmers and ranchers. USDA employees will not consider applications for new loans, the new dairy support program, disaster relief, or Trump tariff payments.
On Thursday, in a test of partisan resolve, the Democratic-controlled House passed, on a nearly party-line vote of 243-180, a funding bill to reopen the USDA and FDA. With the exception of essential work such as meat inspection, both agencies have been shuttered since late December by the partial government shutdown.
The Trump administration will release an estimated $4.8 billion to SNAP recipients on January 20, nearly two weeks early, to ensure they get their February food stamps despite the partial government shutdown, announced Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue on Tuesday. The USDA said its other public nutrition programs, including WIC, school lunch and food donations, are funded through February, alleviating concerns of hunger among millions of Americans during a protracted shutdown.
As the government shutdown enters its third week, its consequences for food producers and eaters are wide-ranging. From food pantries to breweries to farm country, the furloughing of 800,000 federal staffers is having dramatic consequences.
With farmers locked out of USDA offices because of the partial government shutdown, Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue announced on Tuesday that he was extending the January 15 deadline to sign up for $9.6 billion in Trump tariff payments. The extension will “equal to the number of business …
Two of the major public nutrition programs, SNAP and WIC, could run out of money if the partial government shutdown persists into February and beyond, affecting millions of people. While the USDA says funding is assured for this month, it is not as clear about what to expect in the future.
The Agriculture Department is expected to announce today that a set of major crop reports scheduled for release Jan. 11 will be delayed until the government shutdown is over, said chief economist Robert Johansson.
Barring a breakthrough in negotiations between the White House and Congress, the partial government shutdown will force the USDA to delay next week’s scheduled release of potentially market-moving reports that take a final look at the 2018 crops and provide the first hints of this year’s production.
Federal meat inspectors would report to work as usual and the SNAP and WIC programs would stay in operation if there is a partial government shutdown at the end of this week, according to a USDA plan developed for the brief shutdown early this year. Offices running the farm program would be closed, which probably would mean that Trump tariff payments would be delayed until the government opened again.
An estimated three-fourths of USDA employees would be furloughed in a federal shutdown, but officials said major activities will continue, such as food stamps, meat inspection and support for the NAFTA negotiations scheduled to resume on Tuesday. Over the weekend, Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue sent a series of 12 tweets, most of them illustrated with topical photos, that formed a comprehensive list of ongoing activities.
The food-stamp program, the largest U.S. anti-hunger initiative, will stop distributing benefits if there is no budget agreement and the federal government shuts down on Oct. 1 for the second time in three years, said the USDA. "Once that occurs, families won't be able to use these benefits at grocery stores to buy the food their families need."