What We Are Watching: Federal Advocacy

2018 Farm Bill:

The Farm Bill is a huge complex piece of legislation that is reauthorized and passed approximately every 5 years. This bill brings together farm industry interests, conservation interests, human services interests, and really nearly any stakeholder that has an interest in our food system.

Agriculture interests so far are pushing for an "intact" Farm Bill (one that does not try to separate out the nutrition title from the rest of the bill). 

Still, we are anticipating some serious fights in regards to SNAP (food stamps). Some potential things we could see are proposals that would restructure SNAP (block grant), create more barriers and less help through increased work requirements or other onerous provisions, and all out direct efforts to cut funding to the program. 

What we would like to see: a real effort to strengthen SNAP by increasing the benefit rate based on the "low cost" food plan as opposed to the "thrifty" food plan as described by USDA. This would increase the ability of food stamp recipients to purchase healthier food. 

Budget Proposals:

We are also watching any budget proposal that include cuts or efforts to restructure important nutrition programs as well as other basic needs programs that our communities rely upon for health and well-being.

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