Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue this week echoed his predecessor, telling U.S. House lawmakers the Department of Agriculture does not have the authority to declare cottonseed as an oilseed. Perdue carried the same message former Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack offered to lawmakers on the issue, as advised by USDA lawyers. Perdue was asked about the issue during a House Agriculture Appropriations Subcommittee hearing. He said he knew Vilsack “wrestled with that” and added, he is “getting the same legal advice from the general counsel now,” according to the Hagstrom Report. The National Cotton Council and Southern members of Congress have asked both Vilsack and Perdue to declare cottonseed an oilseed so that it would be eligible for oilseed subsidies.
From the National Association of Farm Broadcasting News Service.