Ag News: Vilsack Visits Mexico and NASS Biannual Data User’s Meeting
**A California lawmaker wants to ensure food served in public schools and universities is grown in the U.S.
A bill by Senator Anna Caballero of Salinas would require schools to serve American produce unless the cost of foreign foods is 25% less or a specific commodity, like bananas, isn’t produced in abundance in the U.S.
The bill looks to protect domestic farmers who adhere to higher environmental standards than foreign competitors.
**Ag Secretary Tom Vilsack met with his counterpart in Mexico last week to announce the opening of Mexico to U.S. potato exports by May 15.
A USDA statement says they met to continue cooperation on shared priorities, including open trade, science-based policy-making, and sustainable and climate-smart ag production.
Afterwards, Vilsack announced the U.S. and Mexico have concluded all necessary plant health protocols and agreed to a final visit by Mexican officials that finalizes expanded access to the Mexican market for U.S. potatoes.
**USDA’s National Ag Statistics Service will hold its biannual Data Users’ Meeting this month.
USDA is hosting the meeting to share recent and pending statistical program changes, and to solicit input on programs important to agriculture.
The meeting will be Tuesday, April 19, at the University of Chicago.
Virtual attendance is an option. The meeting is free and open to the public, but registration is required … at www.nass.usda.gov