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Rep. Mann, Colleagues Introduce Ag Export Promotion Act

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Washington, D.C. – Wednesday, U.S. Representative Tracey Mann (KS-01) and Representatives Dan Newhouse (WA-04), Jim Costa (CA-21), Ashley Hinson (IA-02), Jimmy Panetta (CA-19), Brad Finstad (MN-01), Kim Schrier (WA-08), and Chellie Pingree (ME-01) introduced the Ag Export Promotion Act alongside Senators Angus King (I-ME),

Joni Ernst (R-IA), Tina Smith (D-MN), Chuck Grassley (R-IA), and Susan Collins (R-ME). The Ag Export Promotion Act would amend the Agricultural Trade Act of 1978 to allow the Secretary of Agriculture to allocate additional resources to the Market Access Program (MAP) and the Foreign Market Development Cooperator Program (FMD) for fiscal years 2024 to 2029.

“Trade promotion is an essential function of a strong Farm Bill,” said Rep. Mann. “The return on investment from private sector contributions, which accounted for roughly 75% of export promotion between 2013 and 2019, is unparalleled. The Ag Export Promotion Act will help agricultural trade associations as they work tirelessly to ensure American producers remain competitive in the international marketplace.”

“Programs like the Market Access Program and the Foreign Market Development Program are essential for farmers and ranchers in Central Washington and across the country to help expand their customer base and market their products abroad,” said Rep. Newhouse. “The Ag Export Promotion Act will further advance the agriculture industry’s capabilities to create more good-paying jobs while enabling customers around the world to enjoy Washington’s high-quality, nutritious products.”

“Opening and growing new markets for American-made products are critical to building our agricultural economy,” said Rep. Costa. “Food is a global security issue, and we must do all we can to reverse disruptions in trade and grow new partnerships that help deliver American products around the world.”

“The Market Access Program and Foreign Market Development Program have proven to be valuable tools that help American producers access new export markets while offering a strong return on investment,” said Rep. Hinson. “The Ag Export Promotion Act will help ensure that Iowa farmers have greater resources to remain competitive in the global marketplace, improve food security, and support our rural economy.”

“Farmers, producers, and ranchers around our country depend on the Market Access Program and the Foreign Market Development Program to reach markets abroad and grow their businesses at home,” said Rep. Panetta. “The bipartisan Ag Export Promotion Act would make significant investments in those programs to ensure that our nation’s farmers and ranchers have access to the tools and resources that they need to compete in the global marketplace. Federal support to secure appropriate market access abroad creates good-paying jobs in the U.S., supports our local economies, and fortifies the future of American agriculture.”

“As a farmer, I know firsthand the value of the Market Access Program and Foreign Market Development Program, both of which are essential tools for Minnesota’s agricultural economy,” said Rep. Finstad. “Strong trade promotion policies are critical for farm country, and the U.S. economy as a whole. Targeted investments in these programs will strengthen our farm, food, and national security by establishing new markets and opening opportunities for our producers to compete on a global stage.”

“The Market Access Program and the Foreign Market Development Program have proven to help local farmers and growers in my district bring their top quality products, including apples, cherries, and wheat to customers around the world, unlocking economic opportunity on a global scale for local businesses of the 8th District,” said Rep. Schrier. “I’m proud to be an original cosponsor of this legislation that increases funding for these programs to help the agriculture community facing the challenges of rising costs, supply chain issues, and low crop yields.”

“Wild blueberries, potatoes, and lobsters are some of Maine’s most iconic products in the world market,” said Rep. Pingree. “The Market Access Program and the Foreign Market Development Program at USDA have been extremely successful in helping farmers maintain export markets for products such as these. Increased funding for these two programs would provide vital support to farmers, fishers, and others that want to reach new markets abroad.”

Between 1977 and 2019, USDA export promotion programs added 13.7% of additional export revenue (nearly $648 billion) to the value of U.S. agricultural exports. These programs also created almost a quarter of a million American jobs between 2002 and 2019 alone.

Click here to read the full text of the bill.

Click here to listen to Rep. Mann deliver Floor remarks on similar legislation in the 117th Congress.

Click here to see Rep. Mann’s Commitment to the Big First, which includes a plan for strong agricultural trade legislation.