All Topics » Agriculture and Food
Agriculture and Food (41 - 50 of 1,559 items)
USDA Contracting: Further Actions Needed to Strengthen Oversight of Contracts for Professional Services
GAO-14-819: Published: Sep 29, 2014. Publicly Released: Oct 29, 2014.
The U.S. Department of Agriculture's (USDA) Departmental Management, Food and Nutrition Service, and Forest Service did not select contract types preferred by federal regulations, agency policies, and Office of Management and Budget (OMB) guidance, for about two-thirds (about $783 million) of the funds obligated to contracts for professional, administrative, and management support services (profes...
Food Safety: USDA Needs to Strengthen Its Approach to Protecting Human Health from Pathogens in Poultry Products
GAO-14-744: Published: Sep 30, 2014. Publicly Released: Oct 20, 2014.
Since 2006, the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) has taken a number of actions to reduce contamination from Salmonella and Campylobacter (disease-causing organisms, i.e., pathogens) in poultry (chicken and turkey) products. USDA's actions to reduce these pathogens include, for example, tightening existing standards limiting the allowable amount of Salmonella contamination in young poult...
Climate Change: USDA's Ongoing Efforts Can Be Enhanced with Better Metrics and More Relevant Information for Farmers
GAO-14-755: Published: Sep 16, 2014. Publicly Released: Oct 16, 2014.
The U.S. Department of Agriculture's (USDA) climate change priorities for agriculture include, among other things, providing better information to farmers on future climate conditions. These priorities generally align with national priorities set by the Administration, which include promoting actions that reduce greenhouse gas emissions, advancing climate science, developing tools for decision mak...
Crop Insurance: Considerations in Reducing Federal Premium Subsidies
GAO-14-700: Published: Aug 8, 2014. Publicly Released: Sep 8, 2014.
The cost of the federal crop insurance program and farm sector income and wealth grew significantly from 2003 through 2012. The cost of crop insurance averaged $3.4 billion a year from fiscal years 2003 through 2007, but it increased to $8.4 billion a year for fiscal years 2008 through 2012. According to the U.S. Department of Agriculture's (USDA) Risk Management Agency (RMA), the agency that admi...
Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program: Enhanced Detection Tools and Reporting Could Improve Efforts to Combat Recipient Fraud
GAO-14-641: Published: Aug 21, 2014. Publicly Released: Aug 21, 2014.
The 11 states GAO reviewed employed a range of detection tools, but experienced mixed success investigating and pursuing cases to combat potential Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) recipient fraud. States reported using detection tools required or recommended by the Food and Nutrition Service (FNS), such as matching recipient data against prisoner and death files. However, most of s...
School Meal Programs: Implications of Adjusting Income Eligibility Thresholds and Reimbursement Rates by Geographic Differences
GAO-14-557: Published: Jul 8, 2014. Publicly Released: Aug 7, 2014.
There are a number of measures by which income thresholds for the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) school meal programs could be adjusted to account for geographic differences in the cost of living; doing so would likely lead to shifts in eligibility and program costs. For example, the Supplemental Poverty Measure or Regional Price Parities could be used to adjust for geographic price differe...
National Flood Insurance Program: Additional Guidance on Building Requirements to Mitigate Agricultural Structures' Damage in High-Risk Areas Is Needed
GAO-14-583: Published: Jun 30, 2014. Publicly Released: Jul 29, 2014.
The effects of the National Flood Insurance Program's (NFIP) building requirements for elevating or flood-proofing agricultural structures in high-risk areas varied across selected communities, according to interviews GAO conducted with floodplain managers and farmers. Specifically:Floodplain managers and 12 farmers in selected rural communities with whom GAO spoke in Louisiana, North Carolina, an...
USDA Farm Programs: Farmers Have Been Eligible for Multiple Programs and Further Efforts Could Help Prevent Duplicative Payments
GAO-14-428: Published: Jul 8, 2014. Publicly Released: Jul 29, 2014.
From fiscal years 2008 through 2012, the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) reported spending about $114 billion on 60 programs providing financial assistance to farmers, including about $28 billion in crop insurance subsidies. Those programs existed during the effective period of the Food, Conservation, and Energy Act of 2008 (2008 farm bill). Most were administered by the Farm Service Agency...
Telecommunications: USDA Should Evaluate the Performance of the Rural Broadband Loan Program
GAO-14-471: Published: May 22, 2014. Publicly Released: Jun 23, 2014.
The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Rural Utilities Service (RUS) has approved 100 loans to geographically and demographically diverse areas through its Rural Broadband Access Loan and Loan Guarantee Program (“loan program”), though over 40 percent of these loans are no longer active. The geographic distribution of RUS loans is widespread, with broadband providers in 43 states having rec...
Pesticide Safety: Improvements Needed in EPA's Good Laboratory Practices Inspection Program
GAO-14-289: Published: May 15, 2014. Publicly Released: Jun 16, 2014.
The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) inspects few laboratories that test pesticides for Good Laboratory Practices (GLP) compliance and faces challenges in selecting laboratories to inspect. For fiscal years 2009 to 2013, EPA's Office of Enforcement and Compliance Assurance (OECA) GLP Compliance Monitoring Program inspected from 51 to 80 laboratories annually from an estimated 1,400 that condu...