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Congresswoman Suzan DelBene

Representing the 1st District of Washington

Agriculture

Washington’s First Congressional District has a thriving agriculture industry that plays a key role in our local economy. Our district has some of the most fertile agricultural land in the Pacific Northwest and more than 3,000 farms that grow a large variety of fruits, vegetables and seeds. We are also home to a number of dairy farms.

As a former member of the House Committee on Agriculture, and the former Ranking Member of the Subcommittee on Biotechnology, Horticulture and Research, I will continue to be a tireless advocate on behalf of our local farmers and food producers. I will fight for programs that support specialty (fruit and vegetable) and organic crops, cutting edge research, conservation of our forests, trade and job-creating investments that ensure we have a vibrant local agricultural industry in western Washington. To that end, each year I have led a bipartisan letter in support of increased agriculture research.  In addition, this session of Congress, I was appointed to serve on the Ways and Means Committee, which has jurisdiction over tax policy and trade, two critical areas for agriculture.

I was honored to play a leading role, as the only Member of Congress from Washington state on the conference committee, in crafting the five-year Farm Bill . The 2014 Farm Bill included a number of reforms that will help reduce the deficit by more than $16 billion. It included unprecedented increases in funding for research and programs that support Washington state's specialty crop growers and organic farms, reauthorized important trade promotion programs that will help open up new markets for our farmers, and included critical funding for conservation and alternative energy programs.

The Farm Bill also included new dairy support programs to aid producers. As a co-chair of the bipartisan Congressional Dairy Caucus, I will continue fighting to improve this program and for dairy policies that support producers across our state.

I also introduced a bipartisan resolution with support from Members of Congress around the country that emphasizes the importance of specialty crops. Specialty crops are a growing and increasingly significant part of agriculture, accounting for about half of the value of U.S. crop production in a given year, but they are not discussed nearly as much as some of the more traditional commodities.

The farmers and businesses in the agriculture industry look to Congress to create sound agriculture and food policy, and they deserve the clarity that will enable them to plan for the future. As we look ahead to the 2018 Farm Bill and beyond, I will continue working to ensure that our local farmers and food producers have a strong voice in Congress.


 

More on Agriculture

May 25, 2017 Press Release
WASHINGTON, D.C. – Congresswoman Suzan DelBene (WA-01) today introduced the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) Work Opportunity Act to ensure those looking for work don’t lose vital nutrition assistance. “Eliminating nutrition assistance for people trying to find work doesn’t help if jobs are not available,” DelBene said. “The SNAP Work Opportunity Act would protect – not punish – these individuals. By helping people find good-paying, long-term employment in a high-demand industry we can ensure everyone has access to basics like food and shelter.”
May 19, 2017 Press Release
WASHINGTON, D.C. – Congresswoman Suzan DelBene (WA-01) today introduced a bipartisan resolution supporting specialty crops, highlighting the vital role they play in America’s agricultural industry and calling for increased support of specialty crop programs.
Apr 28, 2017 Press Release
WASHINGTON, D.C. – Congresswoman Suzan DelBene (WA-01) today helped lead a bipartisan group of colleagues in writing to President Trump, urging the administration to hold Canada accountable for its trade commitments in the dairy sector when renegotiating the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA).
Mar 7, 2017 Press Release
WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Senator Debbie Stabenow (D-MI), ranking member of the Senate Committee on Agriculture, Nutrition and Forestry, today joined Senator Mike Crapo (R-ID) and U.S. Representatives Suzan DelBene (WA-01) and Glenn Thompson (PA-05) to reintroduce the Timber Innovation Act – bipartisan, bicameral legislation that aims to find new and innovative uses for wood as a building material.
Dec 27, 2016 In The News
Congresswoman Suzan DelBene spent an hour volunteering at the Sky Valley Food Bank in Monroe recently, passing out food during its Wednesday morning distribution service.
Nov 2, 2016 Press Release
MONROE – Congresswoman Suzan DelBene (WA-01) today visited a local elementary school classroom, as part of the Choose My Plate program to teach students about the variety of healthy foods grown nearby. DelBene spoke with two fourth grade classrooms about the importance of eating local, healthy foods.
Oct 3, 2016 Press Release
MOUNT VERNON – Congresswoman Suzan DelBene (WA-01) today praised the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) announcement to award the Northwest Agriculture Business Center a $200,000 Rural Cooperative Development Grant.
Sep 13, 2016 Press Release
WASHINGTON, D.C. – Congresswoman Suzan DelBene (WA-01) today highlighted the importance of targeted education for those on nutrition assistance during a House Agriculture Subcommittee on Nutrition hearing examining the success of employment and job-training programs.
Aug 11, 2016 Press Release
KIRKLAND – Congresswoman Suzan DelBene (WA-01) today volunteered with Food Lifeline’s Kids Cafe program to ensure First District children receive nutritious meals even when school breaks for summer. “No child should be forced to skip a meal or go to bed hungry simply because it’s summer,” DelBene said. “While school breaks for the summer, a child’s need for nutritional food does not. Our children are the future of our country and we should work to provide them with all the possible tools for success no matter what time of year.”
Jul 6, 2016 Press Release
WASHINGTON, D.C. – Reps. Suzan DelBene (WA-01), Cathy McMorris Rodgers (WA-05), Glenn ‘GT’ Thompson (PA-05) and Derek Kilmer (WA-06) today introduced bipartisan legislation that would open up new markets and create jobs for rural economies by providing research, assistance and incentives for the construction of tall wood buildings throughout the United States.

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