Reclaiming the future of food and farming

PAN's Food and Farming Platform

Working farm

The Farm Bill process can seem complex and it is tempting to think it does not apply to us. But these laws and rules impact our daily lives in many ways. A new Farm Bill is passed every 5-7 years that determines much about the food we eat, how it’s grown, and the impact agriculture has on rural workers, rural communities, and people like you and me — because we all need to eat.  The Farm Bill addresses everything from food access, nutrition programs, crop insurance, agricultural research and conservation practices.

PAN’s 2023 farm bill priorities are informed by our ongoing work with partners across the country who are calling for federal food and farm policy that works for farmers, workers and communities — including HEAL Food Alliance, National Sustainable Agriculture Coalition, National Family Farm CoalitionNative Farm Bill Coalition, The Coming Clean Collaborative, and the 150 organizations authoring the Transformational Farm Bill letter to President Biden in 2022. We lift up the leadership of these organizations and the visions of change they promote. 

PAN strives for farmworker justice, healthy rural communities and fair farm economies — locally, nationally and internationally. We advocate for policies that will create a food system that works for all.

Worker Justice and Healthy Communities

  • Protection for workers and families from pesticide exposure: Pesticides touch every aspect of our lives.  There are pesticide residues in our food, air, soils and water.  The overwhelming presence of pesticides around us can lead to pesticide-related diseases in our people and biodiversity loss in our environment. Children and farmworkers are especially at risk for exposure to these chemicals. We support policies that protect families and workers and support the use of crop and pest management practices that do not rely on the use of hazardous pesticides.
  • Just immigration laws: We believe the United States should take responsibility for foreign policies that displace people from land and livelihood, and allow right of entry into the U.S. for those economically or politically displaced. The U.S. should eliminate exploitative guest worker programs and provide a pathway to citizenship to all who want it.
  • Living wages in the food system and beyond: We advocate for living wage policies so that all workers and all people have access to an adequate supply of healthy food. Until poverty is eliminated, we will continue to strongly support food assistance programs including the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP).

Fair Farm Economies

  • Income opportunity and fairness for small and mid-sized family farms: We support supply management including parity pricing, grain reserves, secure contracts and fair market access for livestock and other agricultural products.
  • Land access for all farmers: As we face an era of historically high land transfer, we support policies to assist with land access for new and beginning farmers. We also support policies that make land accessible to those who have been historically excluded from land ownership or had their land dispossessed—particularly those who identify as Black, Indigenous, and People of Color. 
  • Conservation of agricultural land: In partnership with land trusts, states and tribal entities, we support ensuring that protected farmland will remain affordable and viable for future generations.
  • Reversal of agricultural industry consolidation: We advocate for the implementation and enforcement of measures that protect farmers’ access to diverse markets, seeds, and other farm inputs.  We support farmer access to decentralized regional livestock processing facilities. We also support access for all to healthy, nutritious and affordable food.
  • Local control and self determination. We affirm a community's right to pass legislation to protect themselves from hazardous agricultural chemicals. We oppose any federal preemption of local pesticide ordinances, and stand with the nearly 200 communities across the country that have passed their own policies to restrict the use of toxic pesticides. 

A Food System for the Future

  • Agroecology: We advocate for programs that support agroecological practices that promote diversified cropping systems, healthy soils, robust and resilient communities, and protect vital natural resources—all while mitigating the effects of climate change. We also advocate for policies that support the political, social and cultural conditions necessary to establish and maintain these systems.
  • Ending dependence on fossil fuels: We support programs that reduce the need for inputs of petroleum-derived pesticides, fertilizers and fuel. We support on-farm renewable energy production reliant on minimal (or no) synthetic inputs.
  • Equitable protection from climate change. In addition to on-farm agroecological practices that prevent climate change, we support programs that provide relief for those impacted by severe weather events such as heat, drought, wildfire, and flooding. We must also ensure that disaster relief programs cover impacted farm workers in addition to farmers.
  • Support for farmers that prior Farm Bills have failed to support: We advocate for policies that support the next generation of farmers, ranchers and workers while breaking down barriers to entry, especially for people of color and Indigenous people. We are especially interested in policies that are designed to right historical and ongoing discrimination against individuals or groups based on their race, ethnicity or socioeconomic class.

Take a deep dive: check out HEAL Alliance’s new Farm Bill priorities web page.  This resource will walk you through the "what, why, and how" of the 2023 Farm Bill and it gives a user-friendly overview of each portion of the bill.

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