Sen. Kay Hagan (D-NC) emphasized her support for small farmers Monday at the 75th annual convention of the North Carolina Farm Bureau in Greensboro, NC.
“Whether it’s our large commodity producers or our small, local producers, it is a credit to all of our farmers’ hard work and diligence that agriculture remains such a robust industry in our state,” Hagan said at the meeting. “It is my job as your United States Senator to make sure that Congress is supporting our farmers and helping to grow the farming industry.”
Hagan’s office sent a media release yesterday highlighting the senator’s support for a provision included in the Senate version of the food safety bill, which passed the upper chamber 73-25 last week, to “help farmers who suffer losses due to erroneous recalls.”
“For instance, North Carolina tomato growers suffered when the Food and Drug Administration mistakenly cited tomatoes following a salmonella outbreak when the problem turned out to be a pepper farm in Mexico,” noted Hagan’s office. “Consumer demand for tomatoes dropped 50 to 60 percent. Hagan’s provision will require the government to evaluate ways to appropriately compensate farmers when a recall is determined to be erroneous. The bill awaits action in the House.”
Sen. Hagan is also a key backer of the Tester-Hagan amendment, which would exempt small farmers and producers from certain new regulations. The language was adopted into the Senate version of the food safety legislation, which was approved by the upper chamber 73-25 last week, but has since hit a constitutional snag.
Agriculture is North Carolina’s largest industry, generating $74 billion in economic activity and employing nearly one-fifth of the state’s workers, according to Hagan’s office.
Photo courtesy North Carolina Farm Bureau and Sen. Hagan.