National Fisheries Institute Statement on Emerging Farm Bill Framework

Reston, VA – June 14, 2024 – As the House and Senate continue work on proposed Farm Bill legislation, the emerging framework for the first time reflects a significant focus on fisheries.

Available drafts and outlines include an interest in technical assistance to help improve cold chain capacity and infrastructure, an increased awareness of the need for seafood in nutrition programs, a focus on aquaculture, and an effort to give seafood-related businesses access to much needed credit in the form of the Food Supply Chain Grant and Guaranteed Loan Program.  In addition, proposals note the need to evaluate ways to expand seafood processing in coastal communities and establish a seafood liaison at the Department of Agriculture (USDA) to improve coordination on seafood policy.

Those leading the charge to craft a responsible path forward for the next Farm Bill, like Senators Debbie Stabenow (Chairwoman) and John Boozman (Ranking Member) , along with Representatives G.T. Thompson and David Scott, illustrate a bipartisan interest in incorporating seafood into USDA’s work and programs. The US Dietary Guidelines call for a greater emphasis on this vital protein and this effort is an acknowledgment of the important work done by hundreds of thousands of men and women in the seafood value chain who help feed America.

Lisa Wallenda Picard
President & CEO