WASHINGTON — The Pet Food Institute (PFI) recently commended new legislation, called the Supporting Market Access to Reinvigorate Trade Act of 2022 or the SMART Act, to increase US trade for agricultural and pet food industries.

If enacted into law, the SMART Act is anticipated to increase funding to the US Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) Market Access Program (MAP) by at least $400 million and to the Foreign Market Development (FMD) Program by at least $69 million, annually. According to PFI, these programs are critical to US farmers, agricultural and pet food producers seeking to expand global market access.

“US agricultural products feed the world and their pets,” said Dana Brooks, president and chief executive officer of PFI. “Unfortunately, significant investments into US export promotion programs have waned over the past several years and the United States has fallen behind their foreign competition. It’s crucial that we now reinvest in these important export programs. We urge Congress to pass this important legislation to help our farmers and ranchers stay competitive in the global market.” 

The bipartisan legislation was introduced by US Representatives Jim Costa (D-Calif.), Jimmy Panetta (D-Calif.), Cindy Axne (D-Iowa), Ashley Hinson (R-Iowa), Tracey Mann (R-Kan.), Dan Newhouse (R-Wash.) and Kim Schrier (D-Wash.).

PFI also commended US Senators Angus King (I-Maine), Joni Ernst (R-Iowa), Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa) and Tina Smith (D-Minn.), who introduced another version of the SMART Act, called Cultivating Revitalization by Expanding American Agricultural Trade and Exports Act of 2022 or the CREAATE Act, in late September.

The SMART Act is currently supported by the Coalition to Promote US Agricultural Exports, as well as several other agricultural organizations.

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