Congressman Blumenauer Announces Legislation to Create More Visionary, Equitable, and Cost-effective Food & Farm Policies

August 1, 2017
Press Release

Portland, Ore. – As Congress begins the process of reauthorizing the Farm Bill, Congressman Earl Blumenauer (OR-03) today announced that he will soon introduce comprehensive food and farm legislation to refocus federal resources on those who need it most, foster innovation, encourage investments in people and the planet, and ensure access to healthy foods. Blumenauer announced the legislation—which will be introduced in the fall—at an event with local farmers, conservationists, chefs, nutrition advocates, and other stakeholders, many of whom have engaged with him on ways the Farm Bill should be changed to better serve Oregon's needs and improve our nation’s food and farm policies.

Today, Blumenauer also released his report, “Growing Opportunities: Reforming the Farm Bill for Every American.”

“For too long the Farm Bill has helped the wrong people grow the wrong food in the wrong places,” said Blumenauer. “We need the right food and farm policy that will help all families and farmers, as well as the environment.”

Blumenauer’s legislation will ensure more visionary, equitable, and cost-effective U.S. agricultural policies by:  

  • Reining in excessive spending in commodity programs;
  • Cutting wasteful crop insurance and making it work better for farmers who need it;
  • Investing in the future of American farmers through increased resources and land access for beginning and small farmers;
  • Strengthening nutrition programs and feeding more Americans;
  • Reducing food waste and ensuring that more resources go to the needy;
  • Reforming conservation programs to be more cost-effective and outcome-driven;
  • Enhancing innovative research and development towards organic and sustainable agriculture; and
  • Focusing federal investments in local and regional food systems.

Click here to read a full summary.

Background on Blumenauer’s Food & Farm Efforts

Blumenauer’s legislation is the result of his Sing Your Own Farm Bill project, a multi-year effort to engage a wide variety of stakeholders in creating a more visionary, equitable, and cost-effective Farm Bill. As part of this project, Blumenauer has met with agricultural researchers, farmworkers, nutrition advocates, conservation interests, winemakers, nurseries, wheat growers, small and mid-sized farmers and ranchers, processors, agricultural policy advocates, and more. Together, they have brainstormed how federal agricultural policies could be best shaped to meet Oregon’s distinct and varied needs. Blumenauer’s legislation includes the policy priorities that have grown out of this feedback.