Whistling Past the Graveyard: USDA’s Analysis of the COVID-19 Shock & Global Food Security Trends

Alexander Langer is a law student at NYU School of Law and guest contributor on this blog. After years of steadily rising global food security, more people will go hungry this year because of COVID-19 and the related global economic crisis. However, the global food system that is so vulnerable to these shocks continues to chug along, and U.S. global…

Continue Reading

USDA Extends Critical School Lunch Waivers, but More is Needed

Hannah Yang is a law student at NYU School of Law and guest contributor on this blog.  The USDA Food and Nutrition Service’s mission is “to increase food security and reduce hunger.” As part of its mission, it oversees the National School Lunch Program, which provides free or reduced lunch for eligible students while school is in session. The Summer…

Continue Reading

New FBLE Backgrounder: COVID-19 Response & Farm Bill Policy

The COVID-19 pandemic has presented a number of new and difficult challenges for families, farmers and other small business owners, and food producers across the country. While closures of schools, restaurants, and hotels help slow the rapid spread of infection, they have also resulted in surges in unemployment and food insecurity. Moreover, these closures cut farmers off from key markets…

Continue Reading

House SCCC Report Includes Major Agriculture Policy and Food Waste Reduction Recommendations

This blogpost is cross-posted from the HLS Food Law & Policy Clinic Blog. Original version here. Ali Schklair and MJ McDonald are interns at the HLS Food Law & Policy Clinic and guest contributors to this blog.  In June 2020, the House Select Committee on the Climate Crisis (Select Committee) released Solving the Climate Crisis, a comprehensive set of recommendations to confront…

Continue Reading

Expanding Support for Local and Regional Food Systems in COVID-19 Response

Originally published at the Harvard Law School Center for Health Law & Policy, Food Law & Policy Blog. As the response to coronavirus continues and states increase or extend stay-at-home orders or advisories, the local food system is in a precarious position. The CARES Act stimulus explicitly includes the local food system in a new $9.5 billion disaster relief program. But…

Continue Reading

New Horizons for the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program in Disasters and Pandemics (D-SNAP & P-SNAP)

While it’s currently a challenge not to keep up with the latest developments on COVID-19, you might not know that states have been tirelessly submitting requests to the federal government for major disaster declarations. At the time of this writing, New York, California, Washington, Louisiana, Iowa, New Jersey, Georgia, Oregon, Connecticut, Kentucky, South Carolina, Missouri, Maryland, Illinois, Florida, Texas, Colorado,…

Continue Reading

Actions for Congress and USDA to Support Local and Regional Food Systems During COVID-19

Originally published at the Harvard Law School Center for Health Law & Policy, Food Law & Policy Blog. As social distancing measures close schools and public gatherings nationwide, farmers markets closures reveal a difficult reality for a particularly vulnerable segment of the food system: local and regional farmers and ranchers. Estimates indicate that direct-to-consumer markets and institutional purchases, such as…

Continue Reading

The Farm Workforce Modernization Act Proposal

Amy Allen is a law student at the Elisabeth Haub School of Law at Pace University and a guest contributor to this blog.  On Wednesday, December 11, 2019, the House passed a bipartisan amendment to the Immigration and Nationality Act, the Farm Workforce Modernization Act. The proposed legislation creates an opportunity for currently undocumented agricultural workers to obtain authorized work status…

Continue Reading

Student Series: Investigation into USDA’s Handling of Climate Research

The USDA has come under scrutiny recently over whether the agency withheld various climate change reports from the public. On September 19, 2019, Senate Democrats released a report (the DPCC report) citing more than 1,400 climate studies from USDA that the agency failed to publicize. According to the report, the USDA did not issue announcements or press releases on more…

Continue Reading