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The central coast of California is home to a bountiful and beautiful agriculture industry. Our district alone produces over 100 different kinds of specialty crops, earning us the title of the “Salad Bowl of the World.”

As a member of the House Agriculture Committee as well as the House Ways and Means Committee, I will continue to advocate on behalf of the growers, shippers, and farm workers of the Central Coast who help contribute to this $5 billion economic engine. Serving on both the Agriculture and Ways and Means committees allows me to advocate for Central Coast farmers through trade, biotech innovations, and more.

Through my appointment to the Biotechnology, Horticulture, and Research subcommittee I will work to ensure that producers, both conventional and organic, are supported by investments in plant breeding, pest management, and resource conservation. Our U.S. Department of Agriculture research station in Salinas is critical to this mission, working to develop solutions for the unique challenges faced by specialty crop producers, organic growers, and rural communities.

As a member of the Nutrition subcommittee to help expand access to the fresh fruits and vegetables grown in our district. The programs under this subcommittee’s jurisdiction are expansive, ranging from the meals our children eat at school to the availability of farmers markets in our communities.  With so much agriculture production in our district, I want to ensure than the products we grow are accessible by all.

I also serve member of the Livestock and Foreign Agriculture subcommittee.  This Subcommittee has jurisdiction over policies, statutes, and markets relating to all livestock, poultry, dairy, and seafood.  It also oversees the inspection, marketing, and promotion of such commodities and products like aquaculture, animal welfare, grazing, foreign agricultural assistance, and trade promotion.

Although the Agriculture Committee and Ways and Means Committee do not handle immigration reform, I realize that our nation’s immigration policy greatly affects our agriculture, especially on the Central Coast. That is why I advocate for bipartisan immigration reform every chance possible. Despite the rhetoric, declarations, and Executive Orders coming out of the Administration, I will work with my Democratic and Republican colleagues, especially those on the Agriculture Committee, to craft an effective farm labor solution that provides certainty for both our growers and farmworkers.

Read more about the passage of the 2018 Farm Bill, here

More on Agriculture

January 16, 2020 Press Release

WASHINGTON, DC – Today, Congressman Jimmy Panetta (CA-20) and Congressman Doug LaMalfa (CA-01) introduced a bipartisan resolution to recognize the over 200 American firefighters who have provided their services to combat the bushfires currently ravaging the Australian continent. The resolution also honors the longstanding partnership between the United States and Australia to share critical firefighting resources during times of crisis.

December 20, 2019 Press Release

WASHINGTON, DC – Today Congressman Jimmy Panetta (CA-20) announced he co-introduced H.R. 5438, the End Valley Fever Now Act to address the potentially deadly disease caused by breathing toxic spores found in soil. Congressman TJ Cox (CA-21) is the lead sponsor of the bill.

December 19, 2019 Press Release

WASHINGTON, DC – Today Congressman Jimmy Panetta (CA-20) voted for the United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA) implementing legislation, which included improvements negotiated by the Democratic Majority of the United States House of Representatives.

"Our agriculture on the central coast of California relies heavily on our leading trade partners Canada and Mexico. The USMCA will provide our farmers and ranchers with improved and continued access to those critical export markets and give them the certainty that they deserve. 

December 13, 2019 Press Release

SALINAS, CA – Yesterday, Congressman Jimmy Panetta (CA-20) met with Food and Drug Administration (FDA) Deputy Commissioner for Food Policy and Response Frank Yiannas, to discuss new findings and the current status of the romaine lettuce E. coli O157:H7 outbreak.

December 11, 2019 Press Release

WASHINGTON, DC – Today the Farm Workforce Modernization Act, a bipartisan bill spearheaded by U.S. Representatives Jimmy Panetta (D-CA-20), Zoe Lofgren (D-CA-19), Dan Newhouse (R-WA-04), Mike Simpson (R-ID-02), Doug LaMalfa (R-CA-01), and Mario Diaz-Balart (R-FL-25), passed the U.S. House of Representatives with a 260-165 vote.

December 10, 2019 Press Release

WASHINGTON, DC – Today, Congressman Jimmy Panetta (CA-20) released the following statement after Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Ways and Means Committee Chairman Richard Neal announced a deal with United States Trade Representative Ambassador Lighthizer on the United States-Mexico-Canada Trade Agreement.

December 5, 2019 In The News

Naomi Earp, the Agriculture deputy assistant secretary for civil rights, who ran into trouble trying to get the Senate to confirm her as assistant secretary, has won the ire of Rep. Marcia Fudge, D-Ohio, who chairs the House Agriculture Nutrition, Oversight and Department Operations Subcommittee.

Fudge expressed indignation with Earp at many points during a November 19 oversight hearing, but was particularly upset by Earp’s statement that some USDA employees use Equal Employment Opportunity complaints to punish managers and supervisors.

December 4, 2019 Press Release

WASHINGTON, DC – Today, Congressman Jimmy Panetta (D-Carmel Valley) released the following statement after the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) announced that the administration will increase requirements for hungry Americans using the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), known as CalFresh in California, and weaken states’ ability to provide food assistance in high-unemployment areas.

November 26, 2019 In The News

After the Food and Drug Administration and the Centers for Disease Control told consumers on Thursday not to eat romaine lettuce from the Salinas Valley in California due to illnesses from E. coli O157, the head of the California Leafy Greens Marketing Agreement (LGMA) and Rep. Jimmy Panetta, D-Calif., both said they were devastated by the news and would work with the FDA and the CDC to try to figure out the root cause of the outbreak.

November 25, 2019 In The News

Courtesy of Congressman Jimmy Panetta’s Office:

Congressman Jimmy Panetta (CA-20) released the following statement after speaking with U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) Deputy Commissioner for Food Policy and Response, Frank Yiannas about the ongoing investigation into an E. coli outbreak linked to romaine lettuce: