Agriculture

Banner AgriculturePennsylvania’s proud agriculture tradition has helped build and strengthen the Commonwealth from its earliest days. As Pennsylvania’s number one industry, agriculture continues to drive our economy. The industry supports over 94,000 farmers and hundreds of thousands of jobs. Senator Casey is committed to helping PA famers so they can support their families, grow their businesses and create jobs.

As a member of the Senate Committee on Agriculture, Nutrition, and Forestry, Senator Casey fights for Pennsylvania’s hard-working farmers. A thriving agricultural industry creates and supports jobs in every county in Pennsylvania.

Roughly every five years, Congress reauthorizes a package of legislation, collectively called “the Farm Bill,” which governs federal farm and food policy. A strong and fair Farm Bill is crucial to the success of Pennsylvania’s farming families. Senator Casey is committed to passing a Farm Bill that best serves the people of Pennsylvania and supports agriculture, the Commonwealth’s number one industry.

Senator Casey has worked to secure many legislative victories in the 2013 Senate-passed Farm Bill for Pennsylvania’s specialty crops, dairy farmers, conservation and nutrition assistance programs, such as:

  • Dairy: Senator Casey pushed include improvements to the Farm Bill in order to have the best dairy program possible for Pennsylvania farmers. The 2013 Senate-passed Farm Bill includes a new program to protect dairy farmers from low margins, such as those caused by low milk prices and high feed costs.
  • Specialty Crops:  Senator Casey pushed for strong provisions to support specialty crops, which include crops like pumpkins, apples, and mushrooms and are a key source of business for Pennsylvania farmers. At Senator Casey’s urging, the Specialty Crops Research Initiative (SCRI), Specialty Crops Block Grant program and Fresh Fruit and Vegetable Snack Program remain strong.
  • Conservation and the Chesapeake Bay: Senator Casey fought for provisions to provide important resources to farmers in the Chesapeake Bay Watershed. Following his introduction of the Chesapeake Bay Watershed Fairness Act, he secured important improvements in the Farm Bill to ensure that conservation programs better serve the needs of Pennsylvanians.

Latest

  • Casey, Colleagues Introduce Bill to Protect Rural Economies Through Conservation Reform

    In an effort to enhance support for farmers in improving soil health and water quality, U.S. Senator Bob Casey (D-PA), alongside his colleagues U.S. Senators Joni Ernst (R-IA), Sherrod Brown (D-OH) and Chuck Grassley (R-IA), introduced the bipartisan Give our Resources the Opportunity to Work (GROW) Act of 2018. This legislation ensures that the government isn't outcompeting farmers by inflating farmland cash rental rates, while directing more resources to targeted, partial field practices that improve water quality, such as riparian buffers and filter strips. The GROW Act directs USDA to enroll 4 million acres in CRP practices that directly benefit water quality over the course of the next farm bill. Read More


  • Casey, Colleagues Push to Save Environmental Research Center, Protect Children’s Health

    A number of organizations and programs are in place at the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to ensure safety against pollution and environmentally toxic substances. Those like the National Center for Environmental Research (NCER) do a great deal to protect the most vulnerable in particular, especially our children. Unfortunately, the Administration's recently released budget proposes the elimination of NCER. To call out this reckless proposal and highlight the importance of the EPA’s role as a safety and research body, U.S. Senator Bob Casey, alongside his colleagues U.S. Senators Ron Wyden (D-OR), Jack Reed (D-RI), Debbie Stabenow (D-MI), Bernie Sanders (I-VT), Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI), Jeff Merkley (D-OR), Chris Coons (D-DE), Tammy Baldwin (D-WI), Mazie Hirono (D-HI), Ed Markey (D-MA), Cory Booker (D-NJ), Gary Peters (D-MI), Maggie Hassan (D-NH) and Kamala Harris (D-CA) penned a letter to relevant committee leadership. Read More


  • Casey, Collins Introduce Legislation To Help Strengthen Organic Farming Research

    Organics continue to be one of the fastest growing sectors of American agriculture - providing vital support to farming families and creating jobs in communities across the country. Federal investment in organic agriculture research has not kept pace with this strong industry growth, however, and as a result domestic production of organic products is failing to meet consumer demand. To address this disconnect and help farmers benefit from the growing demand for organics, U.S. Senators Bob Casey (D-PA) and Susan Collins (R-ME) have introduced the Organic Agricultural Research Act of 2018. The legislation would reauthorize and incrementally increase funding for USDA's Organic Agriculture Research and Extension Initiative (OREI) to ensure continued investment in organic agricultural research. Read More


  • Sens. Urge President to Prioritize Rural Broadband in Infrastructure Proposal

    As the Administration prepares a broad infrastructure plan while around 23 million Americans living in rural areas across the country still lack access to high-speed broadband, U.S. Senators Bob Casey (D-PA) and Amy Klobuchar (D-MN) joined by their colleagues, U.S. Senators Patrick Leahy (D-VT), Patty Murray (D-WA), Ron Wyden (D-OR), Debbie Stabenow (D-MI), Tom Udall (D-NM), Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH), Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY), Chris Coons (D-DE), Brian Schatz (D-HI), Elizabeth Warren (D-MA), Ed Markey (D-MA), Gary Peters (D-MI), Chris Van Hollen (D-MD), Maggie Hassan (D-NH) and Catherine Cortez Masto (D-NV), penned a letter to President Trump to urge him to include funding to support broadband deployment in unserved rural areas across the country. Read More


  • Casey Introduces Legislation To Help Grow Domestic Production of Organic Foods

    Over the course of the last two decades, U.S. demand for organic products has surged. Unfortunately, a lengthy certification process and complex regulations have prevented many American farmers from making the transition to organic farms - forcing U.S. food companies to turn to overseas suppliers. In an effort to make this transition easier and help grow the U.S. production of organic products, U.S. Senator Bob Casey (D-PA) introduced The Homegrown Organic Act of 2017. This legislation would make minor changes to existing agriculture conservation programs that assist producers in making the transition. Read More


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