Soybean farmers count successes in Omnibus Appropriations bill

The Fiscal Year 2016 Omnibus Appropriations bill signed by President Barack Obama on Friday includes a series of wins for soybean farmers, according to the American Soybean Association (ASA).

The bill repeals the mandatory country of origin labeling (COOL), which was criticized by the ASA because it had the potential to disrupt trade and lead to $1.01 billion in retaliation from Canada and Mexico following the World Trade Organization’s finding that its language was discriminatory.

“Soybean farmers are relieved to put COOL behind us,” ASA President Richard Wilkins, who raises both soybeans in southern Delaware, said. “This was an issue that impacted both feed grain and oilseed farmers, as well as livestock producers, and we’re happy to see it come to a satisfactory conclusion that avoids retaliation from our valuable trading partners in Canada and Mexico. Our transportation infrastructure is a significant advantage for American growers over our competitors in South America, and we are very pleased to see funding specifically designated to address the maintenance and improvement of that infrastructure." 

The bill sets aside funds for Department of Agriculture disaster-assistance programs, which are especially helpful to soybean growers who are used to being affected by adverse weather. 

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American Soybean Association

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