Stefanik Leads Letter to USDA Seeking Clarification for Onion Growers
Washington, D.C. – Today, Congresswoman Stefanik led thirteen House and four Senate colleagues in sending a letter to the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) requesting they provide answers to onion growers about their decision to stop certain inspection requirements and reassure onion growers that USDA will seek input from farmers prior to making such drastic decisions moving forward.
On March 9th, USDA’s Agricultural Marketing Service eliminated a Federal Marketing Order and stopped certain import inspection requirements for onions coming from other countries into the United States. This decision came with no prior notice for producers.
“I will not sit back and allow our farmers to be treated unfairly at the regulatory level,” said Congresswoman Stefanik. “The USDA’s decision to suspend import inspections without prior notice or input from farmers put our North Country onion growers in direct competition with sub-standard foreign products during an already incredibly difficult year. I call on USDA to provide rationale for this decision and provide answers to our farmers, who deserve access to fair and open markets in the United States.”
“On behalf of the New York onion growers, and onion growers across the USA, we would like to thank Congresswoman Stefanik for her assistance in bringing attention to a major issue facing the U.S. onion industry with imported onions. Due to Congresswoman Stefanik’s efforts, the U.S. onion industry was able to make our voices heard at the USDA. This will help to protect the future of the U.S. onion industry.” – Rod Runnalls, General Manager, Minkus Family Farms
Read the Congresswoman’s full letter here.