Animal Health Research Needed in Farm Bill

Kansas  Rep. Tracey Mann took to the floor of the U.S. House of Representatives Wednesday to stress the importance of adequately investing in animal health research in the upcoming Farm Bill.

According to his office, Rep. Mann argued that these investments position the U.S. to allocate more resources to outbreak prevention rather than outbreak control, allowing Americans to see a higher return on their tax dollars by protecting the nation’s food supply and limiting animal disease outbreaks before they spread. The Big First District of Kansas is home to part of the animal health corridor that leads the U.S. in world renown research and development, including Kansas State University’s College of Veterinary Medicine and Biosecurity Research Institute, and the National Bio and Agro-Defense Facility. Rep. Mann has spoken on the floor of the U.S. House of Representatives 26 times to fight for his priorities in the next Farm Bill.

 Rep. Mann has long advocated for provisions related to animal health research to be included in the House Agriculture Committee Farm Bill including making critical investments into the National Animal Disease Preparedness and Response Program, the National Animal Vaccine and Veterinary Countermeasures Bank, and the National Animal Health Laboratory Network, also known as the three-legged stool. Rep. Mann also fought to include language that allows the Secretary of Agriculture to offset animal disease traceability costs from producers, through the National Disease Preparedness and Response Program. Both provisions invest in animal health to prevent additional reactive spending on outbreak control. The House Agriculture Committee is scheduled to markup the Farm Bill on May 23.