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Secretary Perdue Announces Creation of Undersecretary for Trade and USDA Reorganization

U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue on May 11, 2017 announced the creation of an Undersecretary for trade and foreign agricultural affairs in the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA), a recognition of the ever-increasing importance of international trade to American agriculture. Perdue made the announcement standing by barges filled with agricultural products along the banks of the Ohio River. As part of a reorganization of USDA, Perdue also announced the standing up of a newly-named Farm Production and Conservation mission area to have a customer focus and meet USDA constituents in the field. Finally, Perdue announced that the department’s Rural Development agencies would be elevated to report directly to the secretary of agriculture in recognition of the need to help promote rural prosperity. Perdue issued a report to announce the changes, which address Congressional direction in the 2014 Farm Bill https://www.congress.gov/bill/113th-congress/house-bill/2642/text to create the new undersecretary for trade, and also adhere to President Trump’s request of his cabinet to deliver plans to improve the accountability and customer service provided by departments. “Food is a noble thing to trade. This nation has a great story to tell and we've got producers here that produce more than we can consume,” said Secretary Perdue. “And that’s good, because I’m a grow-it-and-sell-it kind of guy. Our people in American agriculture have shown they can grow it, and we’re here to sell it in markets all around the world.” USDA’s report detailing the reorganization was transmitted to Congress this morning. You may click here https://www.usda.gov/sites/default/files/documents/report-proposed-2017-reorg-usda-under-secretary-trade-foreign-agricultural-affairs.pdf to view the report on the USDA website. USDA employees and members of the public may comment on the reorganization plan by visiting this page https://www.whitehouse.gov/reorganizing-the-executive-branch hosted by the White House.

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