Senior Farm and Ranch Broadcaster, Ron Hays, is back with the vice president of governmental affairs at the National Cattlemen’s Beef Association, Ethan Lane, talking about government spending, cell-based meat, and more.
There are politicians on both sides of the aisle looking for more money for their particular projects. One of the big battles the cattle industry has been involved in recent years is protecting the death tax exemption.
“Whenever you start talking about large expenditures, whenever you start talking about the cost of doing business in Washington, we get into these conversations about revenue raisers,” Lane said.
Lane said those who work to lower the death tax exemption are simply looking for more money to fund their budgetary priorities.
Lane also talked about his response to the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) Commissioner Robert Califf’s comments on cell-cultured meat.
“These congressional hearings can feel a little dry sometimes, but they are incredibly helpful,” Lane said. “Every once and a while, you get somebody testifying that gives you a peak into their true thoughts on an issue, and that was certainly the case with administrator Califf from the FDA earlier this week in his budget testimony.”
When asked about the FDA’s oversight of cell-cultured meat and whether or not the FDA would be working with the USDA on those products, Lane said Commissioner Califf sided with cell-based meat as a solution for climate change.
“FDA’s track record in the milk space, obviously, is one nobody wants to repeat with another protein, and we certainly want to make sure USDA’s voice is at the table there,” Lane said. “The way he started his answer, was immediately talking about the importance of fake meat for climate change, which is, in the opinion of anyone in animal agriculture, or anyone who is looking at the science, really off target and wholly inappropriate for an agency charged with food safety and in no way charged with dealing with the environment.”
As ESG (Environmental, social, and governance) conversations continue to pick up speed in Washington, Lane said it is a top priority to educate on beef’s place in feeding the world.
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