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Agriculture Reform, Food, and Jobs Act of 2012

Floor Speech

By:
Date:
Location: Washington, DC

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Mr. WYDEN. Mr. President, the American Academy of Pediatrics, the country's pediatricians, is recommending to the Senate that this amendment be passed to encourage healthier foods for our kids. The Congressional Budget Office has stated that this amendment has no cost.

This amendment would, for the first time, test out farm-to-school programs through a competitive pilot program with at least five farm-to-school demonstration projects so it would be possible to fill in the information void about what works and what doesn't. The Agriculture Department's own Economic Research Service reports that ``data and analysis of farm-to-school programs are scarce.''

Under this amendment, the schools win, the farmers win, and the taxpayers win. I hope we can accept it with a voice vote.

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Mr. WYDEN. Mr. President, again, I hope we can handle this amendment on a voice vote. This is an amendment that would help the gleaners all across the country, who, of course, are the volunteers across America who help get surplus food that would otherwise be wasted out to the hungry at senior centers and at various kinds of food kitchens and other critical hunger programs. Thirty-four million tons of food waste is generated each year. That could feed a lot of people.

The gleaners are trying to make sure this perfectly good food goes on the plates of struggling Americans as opposed to millions of pounds of it going into landfills and incinerators.

This amendment, again, costs no money. It simply makes----

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Mr. WYDEN.--it possible to collect and preserve edible food. I hope we accept it on a voice vote.

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Mr. WYDEN. I will only state this costs no additional money. Senator Stabenow supports it, and I yield to her.

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