Obama Announces Meat Purchases

As a part of his Iowa campaign stop, President Barack Obama recently announced that the federal government would buy $170 million worth of meat as a way to help struggling, drought stricken farmers.

For the past several months, farmers across the country have been struggling with increasingly worsening drought conditions. From California to Ohio, the abnormally high temperature and the severe lack of rain and moisture have stunted agricultural production. While much of the national news has focused on crop losses, livestock farmers are also suffering from the drought conditions.

In an attempt to aid struggling farmers in the absence of a new farm bill, President Obama has announced up to $170 million of meat purchases to help stabilize livestock prices. The government has pledged to buy up to $100 million of pork, $50 million of chicken, and $10 million of lamb.

The increased purchases will help farmers struggling with severe drought conditions. With feed prices increasing and watering rights more and more difficult to secure, farmers across the country are selling off their livestock herds in large numbers. These increased sales are likely to depress meat prices nationwide.

President Obama has already directed several executive departments, such as the Defense Department, to purchase and store meat in order to prevent price drops and help struggling ranchers. This announcement comes on top of Obama’s announcement of $30 million in agricultural aid.

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Written by: Justin Ellison / Farm Plus Staff Writer