Hinson, Johnson unveil bipartisan bill to bolster nation’s ag supply chain

U.S. Reps. Ashley Hinson (R-IA) and Dusty Johnson (R-SD) recently signed on as original cosponsors of a bipartisan bill that would create a dedicated task force to shore up the American food supply chain to bring down prices and prevent future shortages.

“The current supply chain breakdown has raised costs on working families at the grocery store and increased input prices for farmers. It has also led to shortages of food and other essential items,” said Rep. Hinson on May 12. “Our bipartisan legislation will ensure the United States has a long-term strategy to build resilient, domestic food supply chains and provide much-needed certainty for working families and farmers.”

The Strengthening the Agriculture and Food Supply Chain Act, H.R. 7675, which the lawmakers introduced on May 6 with bill sponsor U.S. Rep. Angie Craig (D-MN), would create the new task force at the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) to evaluate the reliability of the American food supply chain and provide recommendations to Congress on how to prevent future supply chain issues, according to a bill summary provided by their offices.

“Over the past few years Americans have faced supply chain shortages of all kinds — from meat to baby formula to toilet paper — [and] the lack of stability is unacceptable,” Rep. Johnson said. “There are cracks in our supply chain — our bill will get to the bottom of these issues and put a plan in place to fix the problems. Food security is national security.”

If enacted, H.R. 7675 would require the task force to submit a report detailing its work and recommendations to Congress no later than 270 days after the enactment of the bill, the summary says.

“Right now, Americans are justifiably frustrated by the higher prices they’re experiencing — whether that’s families checking out at the grocery store or farmers and business owners struggling with higher input costs,” said Rep. Craig. “In Congress, we must take immediate action to get products from ships to shelves faster and to rebuild and strengthen our supply chains for future generations.”

H.R. 7675 has been referred for consideration to the U.S House Agriculture Committee.