Anti-poverty activists denounce House farm bill

Oxfam said the bill continues trade-distorting subsidies that hurt poor Third World farmers. It is also seeking reforms, absent in the bill, that will allow the U.S. to source food aid to local producers.

“The House Farm Bill proposal continues the tradition of pork-laden corporate boondoggles substituting for sensible agriculture policy," it said. "Instead of pursuing the modest improvements to international food aid programs passed on a bipartisan basis by the Senate, this draft rejects reform in favor of continuing wasteful giveaways to powerful lobbies."

"Members of the House Agriculture Committee should pursue significant changes in the markup to cut the red tape that hampers international food aid programs and rein in trade-distorting agribusiness subsidies. As more than 18 million people face a hunger crisis in West Africa and hundreds of millions more people struggle to get enough to eat, Congress should step up with legislation that is in the interest of hungry people at home and abroad,” the statement continued.