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NYU Washington, DC: US Food Policy

Date: 7/18/2013
Time: 3:00 PM

NYU Washington, DC
Abramson Family Auditorium
1307 L Street, NW
Washington, DC

Program begins at 3:00 PM. Reception to Follow.

With Special Guests:
The Honorable Dan Glickman
Ellen Levinson
Shenggen Fan
Roger Johnson

The FY 2014 President’s Budget has revitalized a decade-old debate about reforming U.S. international food aid within the Food for Peace Program. The system has changed little since its establishment in 1954 under Public Law (PL) 480 Title II – in almost all cases, the U.S. government purchases commodities on open domestic markets before shipping them to recipient countries to be distributed by the U.N. World Food Programme (WFP), or by nongovernmental or private voluntary organizations (NGOs, PVOs). The two pillars of the President’s proposed reforms are (1) authorizing the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) to purchase up to 45 percent of its food aid abroad, and (2) eliminating the monetization process, whereby NGOs and PVOs fund their development programs by selling food aid donated by the U.S. government. USAID has called the reforms a means of “recommitting to a more efficient and effective program that will reach at least 2-4 million more people each year with equivalent funding.”

Additionally, Rep. Ed Royce (R-CA) and Rep. Karen Bass (D-CA) have co-sponsored the “Food Aid Reform Act” (H.R. 1983) as a means to reinforce and expand upon the President’s proposal. Most importantly, the bill seeks to exempt food assistance from cargo preference, which currently requires at least 50% of the gross tonnage to be transported on privately-owned U.S-flagged vessels. This exemption would yield an expected $50 million in efficiency savings, but has been met with particularly staunch resistance from the shipping industry.

FoodPolicy.US will convene a broad-based panel of expert stakeholders at the DC campus of New York University to frame this critical debate. Confirmed panelists include Executive Director of the Alliance for Global Food Security Ellen Levinson, Director General of the International Food Policy Research Institute Shenggen Fan, President of the National Farmers Union Roger Johnson, and former Secretary of Agriculture Dan Glickman. The panel discussion will be followed by a reception in the lobby of the Constance Milstein and Family Global Academic Center.

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