Reaction to Senate Farm Billís Passage

The American Farm Bureau Federation commended the Senate for quickly moving to complete work on the Agriculture Reform, Food and Jobs Act. Farm Bureau President Bob Stallman says the bill provides needed risk management tools and a viable economic safety net for America's farmers and ranchers. He says Farm Bureau appreciates the decision to protect and strengthen the federal crop insurance program and the approval of a commodity program that provides farmers varied safety net options. According to Stallman - this approach to farm policy will encourage farmers to follow market signals rather than basing planting decisions on anticipation of government farm benefits. Farm Bureau now looks forward to working with the House as it moves forward with its farm bill legislation. Stallman says timely completion of the bill will help provide farmers and ranchers certainty for the coming year and allow USDA to plan for an orderly implementation of the bill's provisions.

National Farmers Union President Roger Johnson is pleased Senators came together in a bipartisan manner to pass the 2013 Farm Bill. Johnson was happy to see language included that will provide a safety net for family farmers and ranchers - as well as a robust crop insurance program, mandatory energy funding, streamlined conservation programs, additional protections for livestock producers and incentives for locally owned and organic production. NFU is hopeful the House will follow suit with expeditious floor consideration and passage of its version of the farm bill. Johnson says NFU looks forward to working with both chambers of Congress through a conference committee to complete a comprehensive, five-year farm bill before current legislation expires on September 30th.

National Corn Growers Association President Pam Johnson says America's farmers greatly appreciate the leadership and bipartisan efforts by the Senate to complete their work on the farm bill. The group also recognizes the efforts put forth to address regional concerns to ensure all areas of the country are adequately represented. Johnson says NCGA's attention now shifts to the House - with hopes they schedule floor time to consider the legislation as soon as possible. She says the group looks forward to continuing to partner with agriculture advocates to pass a new common-sense, reform-minded bill.

Passing a comprehensive, five-year farm bill is the top priority for the American Soybean Association. ASA President Danny Murphy says the Senate has again shown admirable dedication to passing a new farm bill that will provide certainty for soybean farmers and other members of the agriculture community. He says the measure approved by the Senate represents many of ASA's priorities and is a critical step toward strengthening the farm safety net, protecting planting flexibility, improving conservation, bolstering exports and feeding the nation's hungry. In addition - Murphy says the bill represents a commitment from farmers to their collective national financial responsibility - cutting billions in spending and streamlining redundant and ineffective federal programs. He says ASA now turns its attention to the House and calls on Representatives to move the bill quickly this month and on to conference before the August recess.

National Sorghum Producers also applauds the Senate's passage of the farm bill. NSP Chairman Terry Swanson says as attention turns to the House - it's to the point where everyone must work together to get a farm bill across the finish line. Swanson says this has been a long, tough process - but NSP looks forward to working with Congress members in the coming weeks to bring the bill to its completion.

This bill also addresses priorities critical to United Fresh members ¬Ė including programs that support essential research, market promotion and nutrition ¬Ė supporting specialty crops. United Fresh CEO Tom Stenzel says the bill supports fruits and vegetables in ways that will boost consumption and help provide healthy options to Americans. United Fresh Senior Vice President of Public Policy Robert Guenther says the Senate has sent a strong signal to the House that this legislation deserves to be acted on quickly ¬Ė and United Fresh encourages the House to move forward as soon as possible.

Cattlemen and women have been asking Congress to pass a farm bill that provides certainty for agricultural producers nationwide and incorporates priorities important to the cattle industry - and National Cattlemen's Beef Association President Scott George says his group is pleased with the passage of the farm bill by the Senate. He notes there is not a livestock title, conservation programs are maintained, the research title is sustained and disaster assistance programs are included. George says passage of a farm bill isn't just important to farmers and ranchers - but also to Americans nationwide who enjoy an abundant, safe and affordable food supply. As the farm bill process moves forward - NCBA urges family farmers and ranchers to continue their grassroots efforts and remain involved and engaged.

The National Council of Farmer Cooperatives and America's farmer co-ops applauded the Senate's passage of a new five-year farm bill. The NCFC statement noted that producers across the country deserve the certainty provided by a five-year bill. It was also noted that the support shown for the legislation was bipartisan and regionally balanced.

The Senate's passed farm bill includes a robust and consolidated Title II framework - according to the National Association of Conservation Districts President Earl Garber - as well as a historic amendment to strengthen the ability to conserve natural resources for the future by tying conservation compliance to crop insurance. NACD says this farm bill calls for a number of meaningful reform measures that would cut costs and increase efficiencies and best management tools to care for natural resources. Garber says producers deserve to have a long-term framework in place to effectively and efficiently manage their land, resources and business in the future. NACD calls on the House to bring the farm bill to the floor next week.

Growth Energy CEO Tom Buis commends the Senate for approving the 2013 Farm Bill - specifically the 900-million dollars in mandatory funding to critical rural energy programs he says will help provide certainty investors and businesses need to keep making renewable fuels from diverse feedstocks. By including programs - like the Rural Energy for American Program, Biomass Crop Assistance Program and Biorefinery Assistance Program - Buis says the Senate has reiterated its vote of confidence in the nation's renewable fuels sector. He says America's robust farm communities are the heart of the nation, economy and future - and he applauds the Senate for recognizing their critical importance. There's still work to be done - though - and Buis urges the House to follow suit in passing a farm bill.

Novozymes praised the Senate for passing a farm bill with dedicated energy funding. The energy title of the Agriculture Reform, Food and Jobs Act of 2013 contains 800-million dollars in energy program funding. Funding is included for the Rural Energy for America Program, the Biomass Crop Assistance Program, the Biorefinery Assistance Program and the Biomass Research and Development Initiative. Novozymes points out that the energy title also funds USDA programs that help jumpstart additional biorefinery construction for advanced biofuels and renewable chemicals, dedicated energy crop feedstock development and consumer demand of biobased products - all encouraging further commercialization of the renewable industry. Novozymes Americas Regional President Adam Monroe says this bill supports the sweat and toil of America's farmers. He also says the bill offers the stable policy needed to grow the rural economy.

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