Blue Diamond Almond Facts November-December 2021

In his 30 years in the industry, Administrator Bruce Summers, AMS within USDA, said this is the busiest USDA has ever been with the amount of work underway to address the pandemic as well

Administrator Bruce Summers, AMS, USDA

GROWING RELATIONSHIPS SINCE 1938. • Proudly offering quality almond, walnut, and pistachio trees. • Over 25 different nut tree varieties including the Independence, California’s Contact Your Rep Today! № 1-844-DWN-TREE leading self-fertile almond tree. • Decades-long relationship with Zaiger Genetics.

as climate change. This year, AMS purchased more than $6 billion in food for various USDA feeding programs, doubled the specialty crop grant program, and created a new $650 million grant program, the Pandemic Response and Safety Grant program, designed to help small business in a variety of commodity areas with pandemic related costs. On the topic of climate change, Administrator Summers shared that USDA Secretary Vilsack has called for a whole government approach to achieve net zero greenhouse gas emissions economy-wide by 2050, with a keen eye on President Biden’s initial goal of reducing greenhouse gas emissions economy- wide by 50% by 2030. Understanding that agriculture will play an important role in meeting these goals, USDA has outlined a new climate partnership initiative designed to create new revenue streams for producers via market opportunities for commodities using climate-smart practices. Through this initiative USDA will support a set of pilot projects that provide incentives to implement climate-smart conservation practices on working lands and monitor the carbon and greenhouse gas benefit associated with those practices. In addition to this new program, there are several major investment programs currently underway at USDA focusing on climate solutions. Since January, USDA has taken steps to provide higher payment rates, new incentives, and a more targeted focus on climate mitigation through the Farm Service Agency’s conservation reserve program. USDA announced the Pandemic Cover Crop Program to provide support for producers who ensure



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their spring crops with insurance policies and planted a qualifying cover crop. USDA invested $330 million in 85 public and private partnerships to mitigate climate damage and address other natural resource challenges through Regional Conservation Partnership Program. There’s another $75 million for 15 projects through this program. Also, in addition another $10 million is set


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