The U.S. Senate passed a $100.2 billion spending bill for agriculture, food, nutrition and the Food and Drug Administration.
The bill includes an amendment by Sen. Ken Salazar, D-Colo., calling for administrative agencies and congressional committees to work together to study the impact of energy price increases on agricultural producers, ranchers and rural communities. Another amendment by Sen. Ben Nelson, D-Neb., calls for a Federal Trade Commission investigation into the possibility of gasoline price gouging.
Though this spending bill does not appropriate funds for disaster assistance for producers, senators discussed disaster relief and agreed to include it as part of an emergency spending bill in October.
The Senate version also includes another amendment by Nelson banning the importation of Japanese beef until Japan lifts its 20-month embargo on U.S. beef exports to the nation.