(Neb)-Farm State Lawmakers Praise Confirmation Of USDA Sec

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Almost three months after being tapped to lead USDA, Sonny Perdue today was sworn in as the 31st U.S. Secretary of Agriculture during a small ceremony at the Supreme Court.

The US Senate on Monday easily confirmed Sonny Perdue, the son of a farmer, as the next secretary of agriculture, filling one of the few remaining vacancies in President Donald Trump's cabinet after a long delay.

Perdue will take office as farm prices have been down for several years in a row and some parts of the industry, including cotton and dairy farmers, say they need the department and Congress to rewrite agricultural policy to help revive their business. "Secretary Perdue is a needed voice for agriculture as the new administration addresses issues like trade, regulatory reform, agriculture labor and the next farm bill".

Perdue served as a state senator in Georgia before being elected governor in 2003 - the first republican governor in 130 years.

"As Secretary of Agriculture, Sonny Perdue's agricultural business background and experience as governor will serve the USA well", the trade group said in a statement.

In addition to farm and nutrition policy, I expect Perdue to be a sound champion for trade, something I have heard time and again from Kansans concerned about our ability to open new markets for products made in Kansas. Governor Perdue was confirmed today by a vote of 87-11. Over the coming year, Purdue's main task will be working with lawmakers on the next five-year farm bill.

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"He understands that the Agriculture Department has a profound impact on almost every community across the country and certainly every family", said U.S. Sen.

Founded in 1904, the United Fresh Produce Association brings together companies across every segment of the fresh produce supply chain, including growers, shippers, fresh-cut processors, wholesalers, distributors, retailers, foodservice operators, industry suppliers and allied associations.

"We do believe that in these rural communities the best thing we can do to make them grow quickly and economically is to focus on agriculture because it is the number one driver in these rural communities", Starling said. "Farm Bureau heartily congratulates Secretary Sonny Perdue on his new role leading our nation's Agriculture Department".

Former Georgia Governor Perdue is the third agriculture secretary in the history of USDA to live and work on a farm as an adult, Van Dyke added.

Awaiting Mr. Perdue is the worst farm-economy slump in decades, with U.S.net farm income projected to fall for a fourth consecutive year to $62.3 billion, half the record $123 billion farmers earned in 2013, according to USDA projections.

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