Senate OKs Grain Act & Biotech pressed during China-Obama visit

Wheat-Growers-National-AssociationBy National Association of Wheat Growers

Senate Approves Grain Standards Act Legislation
On Monday, the Senate passed H.R. 2051, the Agriculture Reauthorizations Act of 2015, by unanimous consent. The legislation includes three titles, including a reauthorization of the Grain Standards Act through 2020. This action follows Senate Agriculture Committee approval of the legislation last week. NAWG supported the bill, and sent a letter to the Committee with the American Farm Bureau Federation, American Soybean Association, National Barley Growers Association, and National Corn Growers Association outlining provisions of the bill that would expand transparency of the operations of the Federal Grain Inspection Service (FGIS) and help to avoid any future disruptions in grain inspection operations. Following Senate action, the bill heads to the House of Representatives, where Committee and floor action will occur.

NAWG Urges President Obama to Speak on Biotechnology During President Xi Visit
Last week NAWG, along with other members of the U.S. Biotechnology Crop Alliance, sent a letter urging President Obama to discuss biotechnology during the visit from China’s president. The letter requests a conversation that will prioritize on “practical, trade facilitating measures to ensure increased Chinese access to the products of U.S. agriculture.” With concern over China’s approval and import of biotechnology products the letter specifies the need to discuss a “transparent, predictable and practical approach.” In coordination with the visit, today the U.S. Trade Representative is hosting a full day meeting of the first U.S.-China Strategic Agricultural Innovation Dialogue. Industry, academics and government officials are in attendance to discuss policy and regulatory issues in biotechnology, big data and other areas of agriculture.

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