Back to Specialty Food News

House Committee on Agriculture Advances Farm Bill

Capitol Hill

The House of Representatives Agriculture Committee passed its version of the $1.5 trillion farm bill on Thursday, reports Reuters. The bill was passed with little Democratic support.

"This bill is misguided, and in some aspects, it is mean-spirited," said the committee's top Democrat, David Scott.

On the other hand, House Agriculture Committee chair Glenn Thompson said at the Thursday meeting that the bill “bolsters every aspect of American Agriculture.”

The report noted that the legislation would expand farm commodity supports, decrease Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program funding, and reallocate approximately $20 billion from the Inflation Reduction Act intended for climate-smart farm practices.

According to NACS, SNAP makes up roughly 80 percent of the bill’s funding.

The NACS said that one of its top priorities is to remove SNAP restrictions on hot foods, which would allow program members to purchase hot foods at retail and convenience stores. Congressman Zach Nunn motioned to remove hot foods restrictions for SNAP recipients during the bill’s markup, according to NACS.

The United Food and Commercial Workers International Union, representing 1.2 million workers across retail, voiced its opposition to the latest version of the Farm Bill.

“Last night the House Agriculture Committee passed a Farm Bill that fails food workers and the communities they serve. This bill, in addition to cutting SNAP benefits over time, does far too little for the millions of food workers who are drivers of this economy, said UFCW president Marc Perrone, in a statement. “The UFCW calls on the House to work with their Senate counterparts to write a better Farm Bill that keeps food workers and the communities they serve at the forefront of the conversation.”

In 2023 Congress failed to pass a new Farm Bill, a package that is updated every five years. The latest version of the bill still needs to be passed in the House and Senate before it can take effect.