Debated Food Aid Reform Act Defeated
The U.S. House of Representatives has rejected the proposed amendment to the current food aid policy to source food in local markets rather than buy and ship aid from the United States.
The food aid reform act, introduced by Ed Royce, the House foreign affairs committee chairman, and Karen Bass, on the House Africa sub-committee, would have eliminated previous requirements that food aid be grown in the U.S. and transported on US-flagged ships.
When Obama dropped the share of US food aid that must be transported on US ships from 75% to 50% last year, various shipping firms and labor unions protested.
Food for Peace has been an important charitable program since 1954, and has fed over 3 billion of the world’s starving people. The defeat of the Royce Amendment will maintain PL-480’s transparency due to domestic involvement by farmers, truckers, barge companies, warehouses and U.S.-flagged ships.
203 votes were in favor of the amendment, while 220 were against it.
Here are statements from maritime organizations expressing opposition to the FAARM Bill amendment:
For more on this controversial topic, read: