n a letter to U.S. Senate, U.S. House of Representatives and U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) leadership, the American Sheep Industry Association, along with 19 other national agriculture organizations, stated their strong support for the various state and federally authorized research and promotion programs, commonly known as checkoffs, in which members participate.
Recent distorted media attacks and ill-conceived legislative proposals ignore how these programs are established and approved in referenda by producers who fund the programs with their own money. With oversight provided by USDA, producers have taken it upon themselves to fund over $905 million of research, promotion and consumer education programs annually through checkoff activities at no cost to the federal government. In these austere budgetary times, our producers should be commended and certainly deserve the support of the authorizing committees and USDA.
In conclusion, the letter states that our members see the checkoff program as an investment in their families' future, an investment that they and their fellow producers have voluntarily adopted. We support these programs and look forward to working with you to ensure their continued success.