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Agriculture Department

Farm And Foreign Agricultural Service

The Farm and Foreign Agricultural Service division administers three programs that help maintain a stable market for farm commodities, thus ensuring a steady income for farmers. The Farm Service Agency (FSA) administers programs of the COMMODITY CREDIT CORPORATION (CCC). These programs include so-called price supports: farmers who agree to limit their production of specially designated crops can sell them to the CCC or borrow money at support prices. The FSA also furnishes emergency financial aid to farmers, operates a grain reserve program, provides milk producers refunds of the reduction in the price received for milk during a calendar year, and provides payments to dairy farmers if their milk is removed from the market because of contamination. It has responsibility for plans relating to food production and conservation in preparation for a national security emergency, and provides incentives for preserving and protecting agricultural resources. The Risk Management Agency (RMA) provides crop insurance to farmers to protect them against unexpected production losses caused by natural causes.

The division also has an international focus. The Foreign Agricultural Service (FAS) has primary responsibility for the USDA's overseas market information, access, and development programs. Maintaining a worldwide agricultural intelligence and reporting system, it also administers the USDA's export assistance and foreign food assistance programs. The Office of International Cooperation and Development (OICD) helps other USDA agencies and U.S. universities enhance U.S. agricultural competitiveness globally. Through utilizing the technical expertise of the U.S. agricultural community, it seeks to increase income and food availability in developing nations.

Additional topics

Law Library - American Law and Legal InformationFree Legal Encyclopedia: Additional voluntary contribution (AVC) to AirspaceAgriculture Department - Rural Development, Marketing And Regulatory Programs, Food, Nutrition, And Consumer Services, Food Safety