Introduced Version






HOUSE

RESOLUTION No. ___



Introduced by: Goodin, Grubb


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        A RESOLUTION urging the Congress of the United States to investigate and take action regarding unfair price differentials in the cost of agricultural inputs with respect to the American farmers' foreign competition.
    

    Whereas, Soybeans are a staple food crop, which is essential to the United States and the global food supply;

    Whereas, The United States market for soybeans is estimated to have been $17.7 billion in 1998;

    Whereas, The United States Department of Agriculture reported that Indiana farmers exported $543.4 million in soybeans and soybean products during fiscal year 2000, ranking fourth among the states;



    Whereas, The United States General Accounting Office released a report in January 2000 detailing disparities in cost of inputs to produce soybeans between American farmers and some of their South American competitors;

    Whereas, The General Accounting Office's report revealed that these cost disparities are due in part to discriminatory pricing practices of suppliers who provide seed and other agricultural inputs to South American farmers at costs significantly below those charged to American farmers;

    Whereas, The General Accounting Office's report suggested that United States patent law and other intellectual property laws may provide incentives to suppliers of agricultural inputs to discriminate against the American farmer in pricing these inputs;

    Whereas, United States patent law and other intellectual property law have led some suppliers of agricultural inputs to impose on American farmers contract provisions prohibiting American farmers from using once traditional cost saving farming practices such as saving seed, a practice that the suppliers of agricultural inputs are unable or unwilling to enforce against the foreign competitors of American farmers;
    Whereas, The pricing practices of suppliers of agricultural inputs could be extended to agricultural products other than soybeans;

    Whereas, This disparate increase of the costs of agricultural inputs places the American farmer at a severe disadvantage in competition with foreign farmers; and

    Whereas, American farm policy has impaired the profitability of the American farmer and resulted in decreased competitiveness with foreign agriculture; Therefore,

Be it resolved by the House of Representatives of the

General Assembly of the State of Indiana:


    SECTION 1. That the Congress of the United States should investigate unfair price differentials in the cost of agricultural inputs

with respect to American farmers' foreign competition.
    SECTION 2. That Congress should take appropriate action to ensure fair foreign competition with American agricultural products, including, if necessary, modifying patent laws and other intellectual property laws of the United States.
    SECTION 3. That the government of the United States should develop and implement a farm policy that provides a safety net for all crop and livestock farmers and ranchers, large and small.
    SECTION 4. That the Principal Clerk of the House of Representatives shall transmit a copy of this resolution to the following:
        (1) The chairman and ranking minority member of the Committee on Agriculture of the United States House of Representatives.
        (2) The chairman and ranking member of the Agriculture, Nutrition, and Forestry Committee of the United States Senate.
        (3) All members of the Indiana congressional delegation.
        (4) The secretary of the United States Department of Agriculture.


20022512



HR 1546/DI 84

2002


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