Petition Closed

The Environmental Working Group (EWG) has calculated that between 1995 and 2011, US Farm Bills have given subsidies worth more than $32 billion to cotton farmers. These subsidies give U.S. farmers an incentive to produce excess cotton crops, which then flood the market and cause the world price of the cotton to fall. This then reduces the price poorer farmers in developing countries can sell their crops for.

Poor farmers in developing countries are hit extraordinarily hard because they do not receive similar government support and therefore, cannot compete with US cotton. The reduced income of poor farmers mitigates the rise of their living standards and contributes to longer term poverty, slower economic development, and an increased incentive to use child labor.

A study by Oxfam revealed that the elimination of cotton subsidies “could substantially improve the welfare of over one million West African households—10 million people—by increasing their incomes from cotton by 8 to 20 percent.”

The same study also revealed that such an increase in income would be enough to feed up to two additional children or send up to ten additional children to school for an entire year.

The World Trade Organization (WTO) has declared American cotton subsidies illegal under international trade rules and has called for their immediate removal. Despite this and the fact that NGOs such as Oxfam and the EWG have been working to end agricultural subsidies, reform of the US Farm Bill has failed and billions of dollars in crop subsidies continue to be provided to farmers in the US.

Letter to
United States Congress
The U.S. Senate
The U.S. House of Representatives
Richard Lugar, Indiana Senator
House Committee on Agriculture
Dennis Cardoza, House Committee on Agriculture
Bobby Schilling, House Committee on Agriculture
Jean Schmidt, House Committee on Agriculture
Randy Hultgren, House Committee on Agriculture
Bill Owens, House Committee on Agriculture
Austin Scott, House Committee on Agriculture
Jeff Fortenberry, House Committee on Agriculture
Martha Roby, House Committee on Agriculture
Steve Southerland, House Committee on Agriculture
Terri A. Sewell, House Committee on Agriculture
Scott Tipton, House Committee on Agriculture
Chellie Pingree, House Committee on Agriculture
Mike McIntyre, House Committee on Agriculture
Martin Stutzman, House Committee on Agriculture
Bob Gibbs, House Committee on Agriculture
Chris Gibson, House Committee on Agriculture
Kurt Schrader, House Committee on Agriculture
Rick Crawford, House Committee on Agriculture
Frank Lucas, Chairman - House Committee on Agriculture
Joe Courtney, House Committee on Agriculture
Steve King, House Committee on Agriculture
Larry Kissell, House Committee on Agriculture
Joe Baca, House Committee on Agriculture
Tim Huelskamp, House Committee on Agriculture
David Scott, House Committee on Agriculture
Timothy Walz, House Committee on Agriculture
Timothy Johnson, House Committee on Agriculture
Marcia Fudge, House Committee on Agriculture
Tom Rooney, House Committee on Agriculture
Vicky Hartzler, House Committee on Agriculture
Renee Ellmers, House Committee on Agriculture
Jim Costa, House Committee on Agriculture
James McGovern, House Committee on Agriculture
Tim Holden, House Committee on Agriculture
Collin C. Peterson, House Committee on Agriculture
Debbie Stabenow, Chairman - Senate Committee on Agriculture
Pat Roberts, Ranking Member - Senate Committee on Agriculture
I just signed the following petition addressed to the 113th Congress' Committees on Agriculture:

We want subsidies for cotton to be cut from the 2013 Farm Bill.
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The Environmental Working Group (EWG) has calculated that between 1995 and 2011, US Farm Bills have given subsidies worth more than $32 billion to cotton farmers. These subsidies give U.S. farmers an incentive to produce excess cotton crops, which then flood the market and cause the world price of the cotton to fall. This then reduces the price poorer farmers in developing countries can sell their crops for.

Poor farmers in developing countries are hit extraordinarily hard because they do not receive similar government support and therefore, cannot compete with US cotton. The reduced income of poor farmers mitigates the rise of their living standards and contributes to longer term poverty, slower economic development, and an increased incentive to use child labor.

A study by Oxfam revealed that the elimination of cotton subsidies “could substantially improve the welfare of over one million West African households—10 million people—by increasing their incomes from cotton by 8 to 20 percent.”

The same study also revealed that such an increase in income would be enough to feed up to two additional children or send up to ten additional children to school for an entire year.

The World Trade Organization (WTO) has declared American cotton subsidies illegal under international trade rules and has called for their immediate removal.