WASHINGTON — The Alliance for Fair Sugar Policy (AFSP) hosted a panel discussion last week on opportunities to reform the U.S. sugar program in the 2023 farm bill. Members of Senate and House offices and media heard from Alliance experts about how Congress can address the high cost of food by making reasonable and targeted changes to the U.S. sugar program and why 2023 is the right time for these reforms.
During the panel discussion, AFSP Executive Director Grant Colvin highlighted why the political landscape in 2023 offers a prime opportunity to modernize sugar policy to meet the needs of today’s economy. Colvin explained how bipartisan, commonsense reform to our U.S. sugar program could deliver positive, lasting impacts to small businesses, consumers, and constituents in every district.
The panelists said:
Brian McKeon, Senior Vice President of Public Policy, National Confectioners Association
- “We have a unique opportunity to find a bipartisan, simple and fair way to fix the U.S. sugar program to provide some relief to American families grappling with the high cost of food. Both Republicans and Democrats agree: it’s time to modernize and make changes that will make American companies more competitive on a global scale, create new jobs, and strengthen communities while protecting American sugar farmers at the same time.”
Nancy Glick, Director of Food and Nutrition Policy, National Consumers League
- “Most consumers today were not alive in 1934 when the US sugar program was established. The goal was to provide a price guarantee to American sugar producers, but because the program has not been modernized in 88 years, American manufacturers now pay twice what the rest of the world pays for sugar. And the price tag for consumers is estimated at between $2.4-4 billion a year. Especially now when food inflation is high, it is time for policymakers to update the sugar program, so it ensures an adequate supply of sugar at reasonable prices.”
Bryan Riley, Director, Free Trade Initiative, National Taxpayers Union
- “The sugar program imposes a hidden tax on American families. There is no reason for us to continue paying twice the world price for sugar. At a time of escalating food prices, the sugar program makes things even worse for consumers. The United States should remove government-enforced barriers to resilient, diverse, and secure supply chains, starting with the U.S. sugar program.”
To learn more about the Alliance for Fair Sugar Policy and the need for sugar reform, please visit FairSugarPolicy.org.
The Alliance for Fair Sugar Policy (AFSP) is a broad-based coalition advocating to modernize the outdated U.S. sugar program established by Congress more than 80 years ago. Formed by a sizeable group of small, family-owned businesses and manufacturers, retailers, food and beverage companies, trade associations, environmental advocates, taxpayer watchdog organizations, responsible government advocates, think tanks and other organizations, the group’s goal is to help level the playing field for American manufacturers and provide relief to family budgets by establishing a fairer, simpler U.S. sugar program. To learn more about the Alliance for Fair Sugar Policy and the need for sugar reform, please visit FairSugarPolicy.org or follow us on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram.