“However, we strongly oppose any provision that opens the FFVP to all forms,” Guenther said July 6. “We will advocate that position strongly within the House Ag Committee, on the House floor, and in conference with the Senate, wherever needed.”
Tom O’Brien, Washington, D.C., representative for the Newark, Del.-based PMA, had similar comments to those of of Nuxoll and Guenther, saying that the bill has some good provisions for specialty crops. But, he also expressed concern about the removal of the fresh requirement from the Fresh Fruit and Vegetable Program.
“It is really a remarkable bill and reflects the importance of specialty crops agriculture in the overall scene of American agriculture,” O’Brien said, adding that the House committee version would increase specialty crop block grant funding to $70 million from its current $55-million limit.