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The Political History of American Food AidAn Uneasy Benevolence$
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Barry Riley

Print publication date: 2017

Print ISBN-13: 9780190228873

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: September 2017

DOI: 10.1093/oso/9780190228873.001.0001

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The Politics of Food Surpluses

The Politics of Food Surpluses

Chapter:
(p.193) 10 The Politics of Food Surpluses
Source:
The Political History of American Food Aid
Author(s):

Barry Riley

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/oso/9780190228873.003.0011

Postwar agricultural policies had resulted, among other things, in the government’s taking title to enormous surpluses of agricultural commodities. The taxpayer cost of storing these commodities and the cost of payments to farmers for these products were soaring higher with each passing year. Domestic demand plus commercial exports were inadequate to reduce those surpluses. More needed to be disposed of through P.L 480, Title I, and MSA surplus disposal programs. These practices were alarming other food-exporting countries. Canada and Australia were angry about U.S. government-supported wheat exports. Egypt and Turkey led countries protesting subsidized sales of cotton; New Zealand was unhappy about butter, and Thailand and Burma were furious about subsidized rice sales. Meanwhile, in the Senate, Hubert Humphrey was calling for directing these surpluses toward countries in the world where hunger was endemic. His call would not be heeded until John Kennedy arrived in the White House.

Keywords:   surplus disposal, subsidized agricultural exports, GATT, Earl Butz, soil bank, Ezra Taft Benson, Hubert Humphrey

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