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Congress Provides Additional COVID-19 Stimulus Relief, Support for Dairy

April 5, 2021

Last month, Congress passed and President Biden signed into law a sixth coronavirus relief legislative package known as the American Rescue Plan. The measure includes critical additional agriculture and nutrition support intended to help farmers, rural communities, and food-insecure households throughout the nation.

NMPF is working with USDA officials and lawmakers to effectively implement the American Rescue Plan, the latest coronavirus relief legislation signed into law by President Biden on March 12. The measure includes critical agriculture and nutrition support intended to help farmers, rural communities, and food-insecure families nationwide.

NMPF has been grateful for the federal government’s strong response throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, which has been proven invaluable to dairy producers as they work, day-in and day-out, to sustainably provide families domestically and overseas with an abundant supply of nutritious dairy products. However, while the availability of a vaccine is cause for hope that the pandemic may ebb, difficult months remain ahead.

NMPF appreciates the additional $3.6 billion Congress provided to bolster food supply chains and facilitate additional purchases and donations of dairy and other food products to those who need them most. Importantly, the package also increased funding for the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program and the Commodity Supplemental Food Program, which provide dairy and other nutritious foods to those households and senior citizens who have faced added hardship and unique struggles during this challenging period.

Finally, the package included important provisions to strengthen resilience and improve equity in rural America and take critical steps to improve the livelihoods of historically underserved farmers, including debt relief and access to credit. These actions will better position all parts of the country to recover from the stresses of the pandemic and strengthen our communities for years to come.

In the coming weeks, NMPF will work closely with the U.S. Department of Agriculture and with Congress on implementation of this new measure to ensure that additional dairy product purchases and donations are balanced and effective in moving nutritious dairy products into the hands of those who are in the greatest need.