After Harder Leads Bipartisan Coalition, Walnut Growers to Receive Trade Aid
WASHINGTON – Representative Josh Harder (CA-10) is encouraged by the United States Department of Agriculture’s (USDA’s) decision to agree to his request to ensure tree nut producers, including walnut growers, are included in the latest round of trade aid. The new USDA package aims to assist farmers who have been harmed by retaliatory tariffs. Rep. Harder led a bipartisan letter with Rep. Jimmy Panetta and 14 other members of Congress who also represent specialty crop districts asking that local walnut growers be included in the coming Market Facilitation Program (MFP).
“The best solution for our farmers is ending the trade war. But until that happens, getting walnuts included in the final trade package is a victory for the Central Valley,” said Rep. Harder. “After our local walnut growers were left out last year, and USDA was working on another trade package, we knew we had to go to bat for our local farmers. Thanks to the help of folks on both sides of the aisle, we were able to get this done. This is the power of bipartisanship. Supporting our farmers is not a Democratic or Republican issue – we all have to eat and we all want our ag communities to succeed.”
The last MFP included many crops valuable to the Central Valley agriculture industry like almonds, but walnuts were not included. After the Chinese announced another round of retaliatory tariffs, USDA elected to provide additional assistance to farmers who are hurt from the volatile trade market. Last week, Rep. Harder led a bipartisan letter asking that walnuts be included in the program this time around.