Bill Bullard

From: Bill Bullard  

To: R-CALF USA Members and Affiliates

Date: July 8, 2015

Subject: Help Stop Introduction of FMD from South America
Background: Opponents of country of origin labeling (COOL) and of rules to independent producers from the abusive marketing practices of meatpackers have successfully delayed, if not defeated, those measures by stripping funding for their implementation. They did this through the U.S. House and Senate appropriations process.

Now we are using this same approach to prevent the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) from exposing our U.S. cattle herd to an unnecessary and avoidable risk of introducing foot-and-mouth disease (FMD) from imports of fresh beef from Northern Argentina and 14 states in Brazil. These regions are not free of FMD and the live FMD virus is known to exist in and/or alongside these regions.USA BEEF

The USDA has finalized two rules that will take effect by September 1, 2015 unless we stop them.

Working with consumer group Food & Water Watch, we have been working to include language in the 2016 Appropriations Bill that would prohibit the USDA from using any federal funds to implement either of the agency’s FMD rules.

The full House Appropriations Committee is expected to vote tomorrow on a bill that contains a compromise hammered out by consumer food safety advocate Representative Rosa DeLauro (D-CT) and a supporter of the rules, Representative David Valadao (R-CA).

The Valandao compromise amendment would block the rules until the USDA conducts new and more thorough risk evaluations in Argentina and Brazil and until the USDA Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) reports back to Congress on the status of its certification of meat packing plants in the two countries.

We are also working with members of the agriculture appropriations subcommittee in the Senate to accomplish the same thing if we are not fully successful in the House.

The Senate is not expected to begin work on the appropriations bill until next week (the week of July 13).

Action: Please call as many members of the House Appropriations Committee as you can (especially those from your state or that border your state) to urge them to support the Valandao amendment that will temporarily block the USDA from importing fresh beef from Northern Argentina and 14 states in Brazil until a more thorough risk analysis is conducted and until a report is completed on the meat inspection systems in those countries.

Here is a suggested message:

“I am _____________, and I am a cattle producer from the state of ______________. I urge you to support Valandao amendment in the Agriculture Appropriations Bill that will protect United States’ livestock herds from the introduction of foot-and-mouth disease from Argentina and Brazil by requiring the USDA to conduct new risk evaluations before importation can begin. Thank you.”
You can reach your Senators by calling the Capitol Switchboard at 202-224-3121
Here are the Members of the Appropriations Committee:
• Harold Rogers, Kentucky, Chairman
• Rodney P. Frelinghuysen, New Jersey
• Robert B. Aderholt, Alabama
• Kay Granger, Texas
• Michael K. Simpson, Idaho
• John Abney Culberson, Texas
• Ander Crenshaw, Florida
• John R. Carter, Texas
• Ken Calvert, California
• Tom Cole, Oklahoma
• Mario Diaz-Balart, Florida
• Charles W. Dent, Pennsylvania
• Tom Graves, Georgia
• Kevin Yoder, Kansas
• Steve Womack, Arkansas
• Jeff Fortenberry, Nebraska
• Tom Rooney, Florida
• Chuck Fleischmann, Tennessee
• Jaime Herrera Beutler, Washington
• David Joyce, Ohio
• David Valadao, California
• Andy Harris, MD, Maryland
• Martha Roby, Alabama
• Mark Amodei, Nevada
• Chris Stewart, Utah
• Scott Rigell, Virginia
• David Jolly, Florida
• David Young, Iowa
• Evan Jenkins, West Virginia
• Steven Palazzo, Mississippi
• Nita M. Lowey, New York
• Marcy Kaptur, Ohio
• Peter J. Visclosky, Indiana
• José E. Serrano, New York
• Rosa L. DeLauro, Connecticut
• David E. Price, North Carolina
• Lucille Roybal-Allard, California
• Sam Farr, California
• Chaka Fattah, Pennsylvania
• Sanford D. Bishop, Jr., Georgia
• Barbara Lee, California
• Michael M. Honda, California
• Betty McCollum, Minnesota
• Steve Israel, New York
• Tim Ryan, Ohio
• C.A. Dutch Ruppersberger, Maryland
• Debbie Wasserman Schultz, Florida
• Henry Cuellar, Texas
• Chellie Pingree, Maine
• Mike Quigley, Illinois
• Derek Kilmer, Washington

Thank you for your calls! We’ll keep you updated on progress as we move to the Senate.


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