WASHINGTON — Following heavy supply chain disruptions in several consumer goods industries, including pet food, the American Feed Industry Association (AFIA) and Pet Advocacy Network signed a letter urging United States Congress to ratify the America COMPETES Act on May 10.

The letter, signed by more than 130 organizations spanning a variety of manufacturing industries, encourages Congress to bolster the nation’s supply chains and stimulate domestic manufacturing of critical goods through a new program.

The ratification of supply chain legislation under the 2022 America COMPETES Act includes proposals by several representatives, including Lisa Blunt Rochester, D-Del.; Tom Malinowski, D-NJ.; Adam Kinzinger, R-Ill.; Susan Wild, D-Pa.; Carolyn Bourdeaux, D-Ga.; Debbie Dingell, D-Mich.; and Robin Kelly, D-Ill.

According to the letter, the introduction of the Manufacturing Security and Resilience Program to the act will help strengthen supply chains and enhance the nation’s economic competitiveness.

“The pandemic laid bare what many of us have known for years: American workers and consumers — and thus the American economy — depend on a robust supply chain bolstered by American manufacturers,” the letter stated. “The federal government needs dedicated funding to help manufacturers meet these challenges in times of crisis, as well as supply chain expertise and the ability to nimbly coordinate across agencies and policy silos to strengthen US competitiveness, drive manufacturing growth, and ensure the continued availability, accessibility, and affordability of critical products.

“The America COMPETES Act contains provisions that would establish a Manufacturing Security and Resilience Program to support businesses working to develop, diversify, preserve, and improve critical supply chains and the manufacturing of critical goods,” the letter continued. “The program would be administered within the Department of Commerce (DOC), which would be responsible for leading a government-wide effort to invest in manufacturing and address supply chain risk.”

The letter also detailed how the government could help fund manufacturing businesses by providing $45 billion in grants, loans, loan guarantees and other financial assistance. Through funding, the program would help support and develop new technologies, expanding the nation’s manufacturing base and capacity.

“As you [Congress] discuss the path forward for provisions subject to the conference process in both chambers, we encourage you to support enactment of this program and the other critical measures in the supply chain resilience subtitle,” the letter concluded. “Adopting these provisions of the House-passed COMPETES Act as part of bipartisan legislation to support American competitiveness will empower unprecedented expertise at the DOC and the ability to invest in sectors critical to the health, economic well-being, and security of our country.”

Read the full letter.

Read more about supply chain topics affecting the industry on our Operations page.