After years of debate and controversy, and heavy lobbying up until the final vote, the U.S. House of Representatives has passed a farm bill.
By a vote of 251-166, the U.S. House of Representatives today passed the Agricultural Act of 2014, otherwise known as the farm bill.
Passing a farm bill took almost three years, and the final result drew responses from high praise to disappointment and anger from a variety of groups both within and outside of agriculture.
“I am pleased a majority of my House colleagues joined me in supporting a five-year, comprehensive farm bill,” said Frank Lucas (R-OK), chairman of the House Ag Committee. “This is legislation we can all be proud of because it fulfills the expectations the American people have of us.”
According to Lucas, one of those expectations is to reduce the cost of government, and he says the 2014 farm bill does that while still providing a safety net for ag producers and ensuring sufficient food programs.
One highly contentious issue within the beef industry is mandatory country-of-origin labeling (MCOOL). While the original House farm bill contained language that would have repealed MCOOL, it was removed during the conference committee process and the final bill the House approved today does not repeal MCOOL.
It’s anticipated that the U.S. Senate will vote on the measure next week.
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