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Agriculture and Food (131 - 140 of 1,559 items)
School Meal Programs: Changes to Federal Agencies' Procedures Could Reduce Risk of School Children Consuming Recalled Food
GAO-09-649: Published: Aug 20, 2009. Publicly Released: Sep 22, 2009.
Over the past few years, several food recalls, such as for beef and peanut products, have affected schools. It is especially important that recalls affecting schools be carried out efficiently and effectively because young children have a higher risk of complications from food-borne illnesses. GAO was asked to determine how federal agencies (1) notified states and schools about food recalls, (2) a...
School Meal Programs: Improved Reviews, Federal Guidance, and Data Collection Needed to Address Counting and Claiming Errors
GAO-09-814: Published: Sep 9, 2009. Publicly Released: Sep 22, 2009.
In fiscal year 2008, the National School Lunch Program and School Breakfast Program provided meals to 30.9 million and 10.5 million children, respectively. Recently, the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) issued the first estimate of improper payments due to meal counting and claiming errors in these programs, which was approximately $860 million (8.6 percent of federal program reimbursements)...
U.S. Agriculture: Retail Food Prices Grew Faster Than the Prices Farmers Received for Agricultural Commodities, but Economic Research Has Not Established That Concentration Has Affected These Trends
GAO-09-746R: Published: Jun 30, 2009. Publicly Released: Jul 30, 2009.
Over the past 25 years, farmers have received a decreasing share of the consumer food dollar. Some analysts and farm interest groups are concerned that this decline can be attributed, in part, to increasing concentration in agriculture. They believe that firms in highly concentrated markets may be able to exert market power by raising retail food prices while also depressing prices farmers receive...
School Meal Programs: Experiences of the States and Districts That Eliminated Reduced-price Fees
GAO-09-584: Published: Jul 17, 2009. Publicly Released: Jul 17, 2009.
In fiscal year 2008, about 31 million children participated in the National School Lunch Program and more than 10 million children participated in the School Breakfast Program each school day. The U.S. Department of Agriculture's (USDA) Food and Nutrition Service (FNS) spent $11.7 billion on the school meal programs in that year. The majority of school meals are provided for free or at a reduced p...
International Food Assistance: Local and Regional Procurement Provides Opportunities to Enhance U.S. Food Aid, but Challenges May Constrain Its Implementation
GAO-09-757T: Published: Jun 4, 2009. Publicly Released: Jun 4, 2009.
This testimony discusses how local and regional procurement (LRP) can provide opportunities to enhance U.S. food aid, though challenges can constrain its implementation. This hearing is of particular importance given today's environment of increasing emergencies and growing global food insecurity, in which the United States and other donors face intense pressures to feed the world's expanding unde...
International Food Assistance: Local and Regional Procurement Can Enhance the Efficiency of U.S. Food Aid, but Challenges May Constrain Its Implementation
GAO-09-570: Published: May 29, 2009. Publicly Released: Jun 4, 2009.
While the U.S. approach of providing in-kind food aid has assisted millions of hungry people for more than 50 years, in 2007 GAO reported limitations to its efficiency and effectiveness. To improve U.S. food assistance, Congress has authorized some funding for local and regional procurement (LRP)--donors' purchase of food aid in countries affected by food crises or in a country within the same reg...
Crop Insurance: Opportunities Exist to Reduce the Costs of Administering the Program
GAO-09-445: Published: Apr 29, 2009. Publicly Released: Jun 1, 2009.
The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) administers the federal crop insurance program with private insurance companies, which, in turn, work with insurance agencies that sell crop insurance. In 2008, according to USDA, the program cost $6.5 billion, including about $2.0 billion in allowances to insurance companies to cover their administrative and operating (A&O) expenses, such as salaries and...
U.S. Department of Agriculture: Recommendations and Options Available to the New Administration and Congress to Address Long-Standing Civil Rights Issues
GAO-09-650T: Published: Apr 29, 2009. Publicly Released: Apr 29, 2009.
For decades, there have been allegations of discrimination in the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) programs and workforce. Reports and congressional testimony by the U.S. Commission on Civil Rights, the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, a former Secretary of Agriculture, USDA's Office of Inspector General, GAO, and others have described weaknesses in USDA's programs--in particular...
U.S. Department of Agriculture: Improved Management Controls Can Enhance Effectiveness of Key Conservation Programs
GAO-09-528T: Published: Mar 25, 2009. Publicly Released: Mar 25, 2009.
The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) administers conservation programs, such as the Conservation Stewardship Program (CSP, formerly the Conservation Security Program) and the Environmental Quality Incentives Program (EQIP), to help farmers reduce soil erosion, enhance water supply and quality, and increase wildlife habitat, among other things. This testimony is based on GAO reports on CSP and...
Seafood Fraud: FDA Program Changes and Better Collaboration among Key Federal Agencies Could Improve Detection and Prevention
GAO-09-258: Published: Feb 19, 2009. Publicly Released: Mar 20, 2009.
In 2007, Americans consumed almost 5 billion pounds of seafood. Most seafood buyers, at many levels--importers, distributors, supermarkets, restaurants, and individual consumers--assume that the seafood they buy is what the seller claims it is. However, this is not always the case. Sometimes seafood products are mislabeled for financial gain--an activity called seafood fraud. Three federal agencie...