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U.S. Food Aid Must ‘Prioritize Population Needs Over Industry Pressure’

Lancet Global Health: ‘From the American People’: the U.S. Farm Bill and the reform of emergency food aid
James Smith of the University of Newcastle upon Tyne

“…With the support of several international non-governmental organizations, the current U.S. administration recently proposed substantial changes, which would largely delink food aid from domestic agricultural and shipping industries through the transfer of an additional $1.1 billion to the International Disaster Assistance fund. … Despite the urgent need for operational flexibility and responsiveness in times of humanitarian crisis, the administration’s changes failed to muster enough cross-party support. … Another five years will now pass before the House and Senate must reconvene to modify and reauthorize the provisions outlined in the latest Farm Bill. To reach communities affected by crisis in a timely and efficient manner, it is imperative that legislators take further steps to prioritize population needs over industry pressure” (May 2014).