AG/FDA Blog

Part 1: The House Farm Bill Mark-Up

This week on Wednesday, April 18, the full House Agriculture Committee met and successfully voted to report its version of a 2018 Farm Bill, based on a draft released last week by Committee Chairman Mike Conaway (R-Texas) and backed by Committee Repu… Read More
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Oh, SNAP! Maryland Federal Court Judge Enters Summary Judgment Against Baltimore Food Stamp Retailer Without Permitting Any Discovery

In a highly unusual decision, a Federal District Court judge in Maryland granted summary judgment in a food stamp licensing appeal brought by a Baltimore convenience store without permitting the retailer to conduct any discovery whatsoever.  In Nega… Read More
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John Block: Creativity

By former USDA Secretary John R. Block If we are anything in this country, we are creative – from the Internet, to GPS driving my tractor while planting corn. Did you know that Goodyear Tire Company is now using soybean oil to make their tires? If… Read More
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Variety May Be the Spice of Life, But Not as Much as the Food and Nutrition Service Would Like in the Food Stamp Program

Congress Bars FNS from Enforcing Portions of its Enhancing Retailer Standards in SNAP Final Rule Federal agencies are viewed by many as possessing immense power over regulated businesses.  This is especially true at the Food and Nutrition Service (… Read More
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SNAP Retailers Beware: FNS Wants to Take Away Your SNAP Authorization

Virtually all grocery stores, convenience stores, and supermarkets sell hot foods.  Nearly all sell cold prepared foods as well.  Most of the more than 260,000 retail food stores authorized by USDA’s Food and Nutrition Service (“FNS”) to acce… Read More
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John Block: This and That 2017

By former USDA Secretary John R. Block Tip of the day— “Seven percent of all American adults believe that chocolate milk comes from brown cows.”  “One in five adults don’t know that hamburgers are beef.”  We have a major education chal… Read More
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John Block: Budget

By former USDA Secretary John R. Block Back in March, President Trump gave us a look at his budget plan. Although without much detail, it made clear to us that one of his highest priorities was to downsize the federal government. And, he would do tha… Read More
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John Block: Two Issues

By former USDA Secretary John R. Block I have two issues to put forward today. They aren’t related, but we are going to have more discussion about each of them this year. President Trump tells us he will put forth a tax reform plan with tax cuts. S… Read More
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SNAP Wars: Scott Walker, Tom Vilsack and Drug Testing of SNAP Beneficiaries

For more than 20 years, Federal law has expressly provided that states may test welfare recipients for use of controlled substances free from interference of federal agencies. 21 U.S.C. §862(b).  Relying upon this Congressional enactment, Wisconsin… Read More
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FNS Agrees To (Finally) Start Publishing SNAP Retailer Final Agency Decisions

In a major victory for supermarkets, convenience stores, and other Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) retailers, the U.S. Food and Nutrition Service (FNS) has finally agreed to start publishing its administrative Final Agency Decisions… Read More
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