Washington, D.C. – U.S. Senator Joe Donnelly, a member of the Senate Agriculture Committee, welcomed passage of bipartisan legislation that would authorize the Feed the Future initiative, a program working to reduce hunger and malnutrition around the world. The Global Food Security Act of 2016, introduced by Senators Robert Casey (D-PA) and Johnny Isakson (R-GA) and co-sponsored by Donnelly passed by voice vote Wednesday night. It includes a plan that would assist communities in developing countries with their local agriculture. The bill seeks to recognize the key role agricultural development plays in both economic growth and national security. It is based, in part, on the premise that the lack of access to nutritious, affordable food impacts not only the economies of developing countries, but also the global economy and U.S. national security.
Donnelly said, “The United States can and should play an important role in helping food-insecure people around the world. No child should go hungry in 2016. This bipartisan legislation supports a key initiative towards reducing global hunger, while also helping communities better develop their local agriculture resources for the long-term. I will continue to work with both my Republican and Democratic colleagues to combat world hunger and improve global food security.”
Isakson, a member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee said, “Chronic hunger and malnutrition are serious problems that have much larger and lasting effects on nations’ economic and political stability, and ultimately on U.S. national security. I believe the Global Food Security Act of 2016 will allow the United States to continue to lead the world in food security. This legislation will not only benefit our national security, it will also have a real, direct impact on the lives of children, mothers and families around the world. The Global Food Security Act gives developing countries a path to self-sufficiency through agricultural development. I look forward to seeing it signed into law.”
Jon Gromek, Regional Organizer in Indiana, Bread for the World, said, “Bread for the World and its thousands of faith leaders, members and congregations across the state of Indiana thank Senator Donnelly for his leadership and co-sponsorship of the Global Food Security Act. Living in a farming state, Hoosiers understand the role of agriculture in feeding the world. This bill builds upon the success of the U.S. government’s Feed the Future initiative and helps millions of small farmers in developing countries increase the amount of food they grow and improves nutrition for mothers and children. When farmers and their families and communities are strong and secure, so are we.”
Donnelly has continuously supported efforts to reduce hunger. He supported the “Farm Bill” that became law in 2014, which included important provisions focused on alleviating hunger at home and abroad. One provision in that legislation is ‘Farmer to Farmer’, which sends American agricultural experts to provide technical assistance to producers in developing countries.