Members of Congress urge USDA to provide immediate assistance to cattle producers

Staff reports
Farm Forum

PIERRE, S.D. – The recently enacted Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Stabilization (CARES) Act includes $9.5 billion in funding to the U.S. Department of Agriculture to provide relief for livestock producers, specialty producers and local food providers. On April 1, Senator John Thune and Representative Dusty Johnson delivered a letter to USDA urging timely implementation of assistance for cattlemen and women.

“Throughout the COVID-19 crisis, Representative Johnson and Senator Thune have been focused on getting assistance for cattle producers since we don’t have the same safety nets available to us as other commodity producers,” said SDCA President Eric Jennings. “Their letter to USDA, signed by more than 140 bipartisan Senators and Representatives, is wholly consistent with SDCA’s priorities for federal assistance that is targeted and temporary so market disruption is minimized and price discovery is not inhibited. We thank them for leading this Congressional effort.”

Jennings continued, “Agriculture is South Dakota’s number one industry and the beef sector is an important block in the foundation of the state’s economy. It’s imperative for federal assistance to be delivered swiftly but responsibly to ensure the beef industry can continue to deliver a wholesome, safe and nutritious product for consumers during these uncertain times.”