Florida Lawmakers Call for Disaster Declaration and Online Grocery Sales Improve
**A group of bipartisan lawmakers from Florida wants the USDA to declare a disaster area for Florida counties impacted by Hurricane Ian.
They’ve asked to make assistance available to growers whose crops were damaged or destroyed.
The lawmakers say Florida's growers have a unique role in the American food economy, as one of the few locations where major ag production can occur in the winter and spring months.
**The Grocery Doppio Performance Report shows online grocery sales improved in the third quarter of 2022, albeit lower than 2021.
The report shows 13.7% of all grocery sales this year are digital, worth $87 billion, with a 14.4% increase from the second to third quarters.
But, thanks to inflation, shoppers' basket size declined 5-6 items in the third quarter.
Meanwhile, grocery retailers lost $2 billion in sales due to canceled online orders, and a $7.5 billion for items not in stock.
**Ag Secretary Tom Vilsack announced distressed farmers with qualifying USDA farm loans have already received nearly $800 million in assistance from the Inflation Reduction Act.
The $3.1 billion in assistance for distressed farm loan borrowers stems from the Inflation Reduction Act.
The legislation directed USDA to expedite assistance to distressed borrowers of direct or guaranteed loans administered by USDA's Farm Service Agency, whose operations face financial risk.