Washington, D.C. – The American Bakers Association (ABA) fully supports the nine-month extension of the Food, Conservation and Energy Act of 2008 into the 113th Congress. The 2008 Farm Bill was extended as part of the tax package aimed at avoiding the so-called fiscal cliff. "Extending the 2008 Farm Bill will provide for a more transparent and robust debate of all farm bill policies that impact the entire grain chain, including bakers," said ABA President and CEO Robb MacKie. "Rushing a new five-year farm bill through a lame duck Congress at the expense of transparency would not only have been a disservice to bakers across the country, but to the hundreds of thousands of baking industry employees who are directly impacted by the farm bill."
"While Members of the House of Representatives who are on the Agriculture Committee are very familiar with the plans for a new five-year farm bill, the vast majority of the House has not been focused on farm bill policies and have instead been focused on major economic issues impacting the country, including the fiscal cliff," said ABA Director of Government Relations Cory Martin. "Forcing a farm bill through the lame duck would have been irresponsible as it would not have allowed for each Member of the House of Representatives to carefully consider agricultural policies."
"ABA has worked closely with many Members of Congress seeking to reform the current U.S. sugar program," added Mr. MacKie. "Having an open debate during the 113th Congress will give each Member of Congress the needed time and opportunity to carefully determine how their constituents stand on this and many other issues impacting the baking industry."
ABA looks forward to continuing to work with Congress to pass a new farm bill in 2013.