America Grows Action 2021

America Grows Action 2021

Maura Bennett
Maura Bennett

A bipartisan bill in Congress that would increase public funding for agricultural research and development is getting high marks from some ag advocates.

The Farm Journal Foundation says it strongly supports the America Grows Act of 2021.

The bill, introduced by Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) and Senator Jerry Moran (R-KS), would increase funding for ag research by 5% yearly at four agencies in the USDA for the next decade.

The Farm Journal Foundation recently hosted a meeting to discuss a report that shows private funding for ag research has grown strongly while public funding has been stagnating.

Somers: “ We estimate that private investment over the last ten years has increased about 50%, while at the same time public investment has been relatively flat, around $4.2 billion. Because of public funding, the US farmer currently is among the most productive and efficient in the world and the US is a global leader in helping meet the world’s demands for food. However, because public funds seem to be stagnating and the challenges we’re facing we have the chance to fall behind other world ag producers.

Joe Somers and Agribusiness Consultant with IHS Markit says Brazil and China are both spending more public dollars on ag research.

Tricia Beal, CEO of Farm Journal Foundation said with challenges such as the global pandemic, extreme weather, and rising global demand for food, the America Grows Act could not have come at a better time.


Agricultural research has one of the highest returns of any public investment, estimated at $17 to every $1 spent, according to a recent study in the American Journal of Agricultural Economics.

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