A coalition of 18 commodity groups recently voiced opposition to the Opportunities for Fairness in Farming, or OFF Act, in a letter to leadership of the House and Senate Agriculture Committees.
If enacted, the groups say the legislation would substantially undermine their members’ ability to promote U.S. agriculture- and natural resource-based commodity products. The Trade Associations represent American farmers, ranchers, foresters, and processors of raw materials. The letter states, “Each of these industries plays a critical and irreplaceable role in the U.S. economy through the production of food, fiber, and other essential goods—all while creating jobs, stewarding resources, and supporting local communities across the country.”
Proponents of the bill argue this legislation would increase transparency and close perceived loopholes in the statutes enabling checkoff programs. However, the commodity groups charge, “The bill would not create any new checks and balances to ensure compliance and fairness.” The groups urge lawmakers to oppose the legislation.