August 30, 2018
Dear Farm Bill Conference Committee Member:
The Sustainable Food Policy Alliance, founded by four of the nation’s largest food companies, has the responsibility and scale to make a difference on a wide array of issues, including public policy that impacts the environment and promotes sustainable agriculture systems. As we work within our own supply chains to meet ambitious sustainability goals, we write in support of conservation policies that build upon our efforts and support our farmer and rancher partners.
Both the House- and Senate-passed versions of H.R. 2, the Agriculture Improvement Act of 2018, include updates to existing conservation programs that can improve sustainable outcomes and the economic resiliency of farmers and ranchers. Increased flexibility and funding for the Regional Conservation Partnership Program included in both versions of the bill will:
- Simplify and clarify the application process;
- Reduce transaction costs for farmers who enroll in partnerships;
- Allow for longer agreements and project renewals; and
- Expand opportunities for product innovation partnerships.
We also commend the policies and funding for conservation programs that prioritize outcomes such as soil health, water quality, water use, and biodiversity; all of which support resilient farm and food supply chains.
We appreciate your work to champion American agriculture, and we encourage the inclusion of these provisions in the conference agreement. We look forward to working with you and your colleagues on these and other policies that impact the people who buy and enjoy the foods and beverages we make, the people who supply them, and the planet on which we all rely.