The California State Board of Food and Agriculture will hear a water update and hold a discussion with stakeholders on federal agricultural assistance programs at its upcoming webinar meeting on Tuesday, June 2, 2020.
The meeting will be held from 10:00 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. via GoToWebinar. The webinar ID is 605-673-747.
“In enacting the CARES Act, Congress authorized the USDA to provide $19 billion in support of the nation’s farmers and ranchers.” said CDFA Secretary Karen Ross. “This assistance is critical not only to farming communities, but also to food banks which are assisting large numbers of individuals and families in need.”
In March, Congress passed the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act, which provided USDA with $19 million to provide immediate relief in the agricultural sector. USDA responded by creating programs that will provide direct support to farmers and ranchers and support food assistance through food purchase and distribution.
The USDA Farmers to Families Food Box Program was announced on April 24, 2020 and awarded on May 1, 2020. California companies were awarded approximately $115.9 million in the first round of funding. The Coronavirus Food Assistance Program was announced on May 19, 2020 with an application deadline of August 28, 2020. An estimated $16 billion is available as part of this national program.
“While we continue to monitor assistance and recovery efforts related to COVID-19, the Board remains engaged in water issues as we enter the summer months,” said President Don Cameron, California State Board of Food and Agriculture. “Approximately 46 percent of the state is experiencing drought conditions, voluntary settlement agreement discussions are ongoing and SGMA implementation continues. With budgetary impacts, collaboration and ongoing involvement by all stakeholders is needed as we continue through this year.”
Invited speakers include: Secretary Wade Crowfoot, California Natural Resources Agency; Max Moncaster, National Association of State Departments of Agriculture; Thomas Stenzel, United Fresh Produce Association; Paul Towers, Community Alliance with Family Farmers (CAFF); Sara Neagu-Reed, California Farm Bureau Federation and Anja Raudabaugh, Western United Dairies.
The California State Board of Food and Agriculture advises the governor and CDFA secretary on agricultural issues and consumer needs. The Board conducts forums that bring together local, state and federal government officials; agricultural representatives; and citizens to discuss current issues and concerns to California agriculture.