On July 2, U.S. Senators Roger Wicker from Mississippi and Chris Coons from Delaware spearheaded a letter to Senate Leadership calling for direct assistance to the nation’s contract poultry growers in the next COVID-19 aid package to be considered by the U.S. Senate later this month.  Seventeen other senators from poultry-growing states joined Wicker and Coons on the letter calling on McConnell and Schumer to include provisions for poultry producers.

The letter stated:  “The (USDA) CFAP provides direct aid to producers of agricultural commodities that suffered a five percent or greater price decline between specified dates due to COVID-19. Chicken was not determined to be eligible for CFAP, in part because USDA concluded that it did not experience a five percent or greater price decline. However, it is important to note that losses suffered by contract chicken farmers, which comprise approximately 95 percent of all chicken farmers in the U.S., were not considered in this price loss assessment. For many chicken farmers, these losses represent a loss of revenues that meets or exceeds five percent.

As additional COVID-19 stimulus legislation is considered by Congress, we strongly request that any future bill provide direct payments for chicken farmers who experienced a five percent or greater loss in revenues as a result of COVID-19. We believe that the inclusion of such a provision would provide parity for chicken farmers who have suffered losses equal to or greater than those of producers who were provided assistance through the CFAP.

A copy of the letter can be viewed here:  Chicken Caucus Letter