Monday, January 31, 2011

SUGAR Act Would Phase Out U.S. Sugar Program

Sweet news on the sugar front. Senator Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH) and newly elected Senator Mark Kirk (R-IL) have introduced a bill to phase out the U.S. sugar program. Called the SUGAR Act (Stop Unfair Giveaways and Restrictions), S. 25 would reform one of the most egregious agricultural programs that raises food costs for consumers, leads to job losses in confectionery and related businesses, and harms developing countries’ competitiveness. Sugar producers defend the program by bragging that it doesn’t cost the federal government. But their sly defense ignores the estimated $4 billion a year added costs to consumers through a program that guarantees a minimum price to sugar producers, restricts the domestic supply, and sets a quota system for imported sugar, with prohibitively high tariffs above the quota...more

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