Spanberger bill to combat supply chain challenges, lower food costs

food desert
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Abigail Spanberger and Anthony Gonzalez have introduced bipartisan legislation to strengthen supply chains across the American agriculture industry and lower food costs for U.S. consumers.

Spanberger (D-VA-07) and Gonzalez (R-OH-16) introduced the bipartisan American Food Supply Chain Resiliency Act, which focuses on helping small and medium-sized farms and agribusinesses navigate supply chain challenges. Specifically, the bill would establish Supply Chain Regional Resource Centers through cooperative agreements with the USDA. These Centers would offer locally tailored coordination, technical assistance, and grants — leading to more resilient, diverse, and connected supply chains.

“America’s crop and livestock producers work around the clock to feed and fuel our country. To make sure they are rewarded for their hard work — and to make sure American families can buy their products at a reasonable price, we need to focus on strengthening our supply chains,” said Spanberger. “By establishing Supply Chain Regional Resource Centers, our legislation would provide an extra set of helping hands to new agribusinesses, beginning farmers, and existing operations looking to expand. These Centers would help local producers get through lean years, obtain the inputs they need, and address challenges related to transportation costs, labor, and high energy prices. I want to thank my colleague Congressman Gonzalez for partnering on this timely issue, which impacts farmers, producers, and consumers in Virginia and Ohio alike.”

“As supply chain issues continue to disrupt all facets of Americans’ lives, our farmers have struggled accessing critical agriculture products,” said Gonzalez. “To alleviate this, I am glad to join my colleague Rep. Spanberger in introducing the American Food Supply Chain Resiliency Act, which will offer direct coordination and assistance through Regional Supply Chain Resource Centers to agriculture businesses across our country. It is critical that we work in a bipartisan way to alleviate supply chain challenges throughout our economy.”

USDA recently announced its intention — through the Agricultural Marketing Service — to create Regional Food Business Centers. These Centers will focus on building collaboration across sectors of local and regional food supply chains. Their mission will be to offer coordination, technical assistance, and capacity building support to American farms and agribusiness.

The Spanberger-Gonzalez legislation would codify these RFBCs, renaming them as Supply Chain Regional Resource Centers. Under their legislation, these Centers would support supply chain coordination in their region, fund technical assistance providers to offer guidance to food businesses and farms, and provide small grants to entities looking to expand or start their operations in a certain region.

The American Food Supply Chain Resiliency Act calls for at least six Supply Chain Regional Resource Centers across the country.

Click here to read the full bill text.


AFP

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