America’s largest farm advocacy group renewed its support of a no-cost sugar policy that creates a level playing field for sugar producers while ensuring a safe, reliable and affordable supply for consumers.
The American Farm Bureau Federation (AFBF) issued its policy resolution in support of the U.S. sugar policy at its convention in Atlanta. The convention marks the 103rd consecutive gathering of America’s farmers, ranchers and agribusinesses.
The convention helps set the agenda in Washington for the leading voice in agriculture while giving members the inside scoop on ag policies and perspectives.
American Sugar Alliance was honored to be among the invited guests.
AFBF’s policy resolution supports critical concepts in the sugar policy, including:
- A program to protect the interests of domestic sugar producers and recommend that any appropriate legislation should include a sugar title with provisions that ensure a strong and economically viable domestic sugar industry
- USDA publishing monthly USDA-validated reports on Mexico sugar consumption, production, processing, exports, imports, and non-food use, similar to reports available in the United States
- Domestic allocations should be distributed to sugar from domestically produced cane or beets to their respective sectors before increasing import allocations
AFBF has long supported the no-cost U.S. sugar policy – most recently backing the policy in the 2018 Farm Bill.
The Farm Bill authorizes the U.S. Department of Agriculture to offer loans to domestic producers to provide for orderly marketing. The loans are repaid with interest and there are no subsidy checks so the policy operates at no cost to taxpayers.
If too much sugar is produced, U.S. producers store the excess at their own expense. If more sugar is needed, additional sugar can be quickly imported. USDA monitors the amount of sugar produced domestically along with the sugar imported through existing trade deals which provide preferential access to 41 countries. The U.S. is the 5th largest producer, 3rd largest importer and 3rd largest sugar market in the world.
“We applaud American Farm Bureau Federation’s renewed support of no-cost U.S. sugar policy,” said Luther Markwart, chairman of the American Sugar Alliance. “We look forward to once again having AFBF as a strong partner as we advocate for America’s sugar producers in the 2023 Farm Bill.”