Washington, D.C. Update

February 23, 2024

Congressman Jason Smith calls for investigation into competition in the global rice market

On Monday, Chairman of the House Ways and Means Committee Jason Smith (R-MO) sent a letter to the U.S. International Trade Commission (USITC) Chairman David Johanson calling for an investigation into the competitiveness of global rice markets.

The USITC analyzed the market and produced a report in 2015, but Congressman Smith requested the Commission update this report to include information from 2018-2023. This includes information on developments in the rice industry in the U.S. as well as in major export markets, policy changes in the U.S. and other rice-producing countries, and relative strengths and weaknesses of U.S. rice production and exports compared to other rice-producing countries.

A copy of the letter can be found here.

House Ways and Means Committee holds a hearing on trade issues

On Wednesday, the House Ways and Means Committee Trade Subcommittee held a hearing on American trade interests ahead of the World Trade Organization’s Ministerial Conference later this month. During the hearing, a rice miller testified on how policies in other countries like India are impacting the domestic rice industry. He called for strengthening enforcement mechanisms to better protect rice farmers and other agricultural producers. A recording of the hearing can be found here.

USDA releases 2024 farm income forecast

On Wednesday, USDA released its projections for farm income for 2024. Overall, USDA is forecasting that income will continue to decrease in 2024; however, cash receipts for rice are expected to increase by $400 million, or 13.1%. In addition, USDA expects that direct payments to producers through ARC and PLC will decrease while the cost of production—including labor and fertilizer—will increase. More information on the farm income forecast can be found here.

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