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STOCKTON – During a House Committee on Agriculture field hearing on farm policy today in Stockton, CDFA Secretary A.G. Kawamura urged federal lawmakers to pursue a forward-looking Farm Bill when the legislation comes up for renewal in 2007.
“We need to decide how much we are willing to invest in food security as a nation,” said Secretary Kawamura. “Security in the sense that locally grown food will be available in our communities; that our agricultural resources will be protected from invasive pests and disease; and that innovative research will continue to make our agricultural industry more competitive in the global economy. This investment is vital to our nation and to California.”
California is the nation’s leading producer of food and fiber, producing over 50 percent of the domestically grown fruits, nuts and vegetables in the United States. California farmers are the sole producer of 12 commodities and the national leader in 81 others.
“In order for a Farm Bill to have the greatest impact on California and the nation, we must visualize our agricultural future and take proactive measures to achieve it,” said Secretary Kawamura. “In the 21st century, there are many challenges facing the agricultural industry, but none greater than achieving a renewed commitment to agriculture and its crucial role in societies all over the world.”